Reel Shorts | This Is It

29 10 2009

The King of Pop gets a glorious and well-deserved sendoff in the poignant, yet entertaining musical documentary composed solely of the rehearsal footage for the uncompleted concert tour, “This Is It.” Featuring tender behind-the-scene moments and new choreography, Jackson appeared poised to re-introduce his brilliance to a new generation.

Directed and co-created by his creative partner, Kenny Ortega, “This Is It” shows the Jackson at his more comfortable and place of ease, the stage. While many in the media have portrayed the enigmatic singer as aloof, strange or just plain weird, in this film Jackson is the high captain in command of his art and his sound. An utter perfectionist, Jackson is shown to be intimately involved with all stages of the upcoming production even briefly chastising his musical director for not creating the perfect sound. “I want it to sound just like the record,” Jackson remarked. Trust me, he got EXACTLY what he wanted.”

The film also showed Jackson’s legendary playful side as implored Ortega and the crew to lift him higher on a lift as he performed one of his signature songs. These and other touching moments give the doc it’s strong emotional connection in light of the events surrounding Jackson’s last days lending a sometimes eerie pall to the proceedings. But the fans will gravitate to see Jackson perform and in the film with only his dancers and crew as audience, he put on several rehearsals so entertaining they should have paid him to be a part of the festivities.

What was really impressive was the amount of footage that was shot leading up to the show and the skillful way it was put together splicing multiple performances together from different rehearsals creating an amazing artistic synergy.  The amazing thing about the film is that since Jackson died so close to the beginning of the London shows that much of the sets and special features that were going to be a part of “This Is It” were spliced into his rehearsal performances giving the audience the sense of watching the concert was never was.

Complete with new dance moves and startling video montages, “This Is It” would have surely put Jackson back in the black and reintroduced his musical magic for a whole new generation.

While their were moments of introspection and sadness watching some of the film’s more personal moments, halfway through the story it was replaced by dread. In my mind, the end of the film not only singled the end of the film but of Jackson’s performing life as well.  Because once the film was over (besides adding several more songs and performances on DVD), this really will be IT!!!!!

Grade: A+




2 responses

29 10 2009

Good review, enjoyed reading through it and felt the same way for most of it. As you said the sadness which came across when you knew it was near the end.

30 10 2009

Not a problem, Caz. Glad you enjoyed it!

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