Saturday, October 31, 2009

This Is It - Michael Jackson


Simply amazing.

Mind you, I have never been a big fan of Michael Jackson. But after watching this 2-hour movie of what might have been, I was fervently wishing it could have been.

Jackson's creative vision, musical talent and genius choreography spilled out over the screen, making me yearn to see the final masterpiece.

It will never be seen.

The movie begins with the montage of the opening, demonstrating in drawings how a robot would drop down like a Deaux Ex Machina. Projected on all sides of the robot would be slices of video, creating a collage of images across its body. When the machine touched down, it would open up to reveal Michael.

And the show would begin.

This theme of showing Michael's multi-faceted talent, vision and persona played through out the film. Editing between 2-3 days of Michael's performances to show one complete song, you saw how Michael was the ultimate showman even in rehearsals.

I always sort of understood he was talented but it wasn't until I saw this movie that I saw how brilliant he was. A truly gifted man, this 50 year old man could dance and keep up with his 20 year dancers. It was hard to remember that he was 50 years old when he died.

He was so light on his feet, so effortless. In many ways, he reminded me of Sammy Davis, Jr. Remember that Sammy was a dancer, too? That same effortlessness was so apparent. Just like the brilliant Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly.

And his voice, too, is amazing. To be able to retain that beautifully high tenor at his age--it made me wonder how he did retain that voice.

But singing and dancing aside, what shone through was his deep kindness and goodness. A perfectionist in all things, he spent days trying to convey the vision in his head to the people around him. That can be a very hard thing to do. But he never once raised his voice, lost his temper or showed any anger.

Over and over again, he spoke of love, of God and with kindness.

Sure, it could have been edited out but after discussing this it was agreed that it was too entrenched in his personality. He was just a very, very kind man.

The production was brilliant. Full of completely executed videos in 3-D, merged montages with classically famous video footage, the breadth and depth of the artistry and talent in him and around him to execute this film is breath-taking.

One of the most brilliant moments in the film for me was when Michael demonstrates a dance ONE TIME to a circle of 12 people. Immediately, the choreographer and a few of the dancers dance it right back to him--EXACTLY mimicking his moves. Then IMMEDIATELY, the entire circle of 12 repeat the dance back again. Now that is master craftsmanship--genius.

But perhaps the most poignant piece of the film is the opening credits when we hear and watch dancers from around the world flock to the opening auditions for his show.

This is it: when we truly see the Man in the Mirror reflected upon those around him.


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