The Unseen Movie Review - This Is It
By Robert Dixter Oct 30, 2009, 16:41 GMT
The film chronicles the last three months of Michael Jackson\'s life, with behind-the-scenes footage of rehearsals for his sold-out concerts slated for London\'s O2 Arena. ...more
This week Sony will be releasing what many are calling this fall’s blockbuster. There are no CG effects, no love story, and thank the Lord Michael Bay never got his hands on it.
It is This Is It, and it is a concert film of Michael Jackson’s rehearsal footage for what would have been his big show in London at the O2 arena. The idea that they are releasing rehearsal footage as a feature film left a bad taste in my mouth, even worse than the time I had to suck on my sock for survival in the wilderness (aka my backyard). So let’s take a look at the pros and cons of releasing this film now.
The first positive aspect of the Sony buying the rehearsal footage is that Michael’s kids and family will get the money. I’m hoping most of the cash goes to his three children and not his brothers who have been living off MJ since he was ten years old. It has long been speculated that Jackson was in debt up to his nose (although this mark had been shifted due to cosmetic surgery). Regardless of what you think of Michael’s spending habits and reckless purchases he was a father to three young children and needs to provide for their well being. Besides who was not shedding a tear when Paris Jackson she stepped up to the mic at his memorial and exclaimed how she loved her father.
The next good thing to come of This Is It is that his fans (which MJ has always cared about) will get to see just how good these shows and Michael would have been. Say what you will about Jackson’s appearance and his weird habits and his Jesus Juice (did he write it like that on a shopping list?), that guy could sing and dance like no one else. It’s almost like his body wasn’t made of bones but shark cartilage or Knex.
He could will his body to do things that would make Polish gymnastic coaches stop and say “Are you sure he’s not a thirteen year old girl?” This leads to the next point, Jackson’s legacy. His last album Invincible was a disappointment and he hasn’t toured in years. He’s been a punchline ever since the molestation charges and his true talent has been forgotten. I’m not saying he was innocent or guilty of the charges but this film will remind people just how great his talent was and he will be remembered for that and not just his eccentric behavior and an appearance that used to make Joan Rivers ask “Had much work done?”
And lastly, Sony Pictures who paid for the rights to release the film will make a hefty chunk of change on this picture. Some predictions have put it at $250 million in the first five days. At a time when movie studios are hurting why not let them and their employees rake in a little cash?
Now the drawbacks. The first issue is that this is rehearsal footage. It was never intended to be seen in a theatre by a movie going public. Not that it wasn’t produced in a decent manner, but would Jackson have wanted people to see something that wasn’t one hundred percent? The man was known as a tireless perfectionist and to release something that was not completed doesn’t sound like something he would have agreed to.
The biggest con of course is that this whole production is cashing in on Michael’s death. The idea to release the footage only came about when people saw the outpouring of love and shock at Michael’s death. If Michael was alive and he decided to walk away from the O2 shows, would they ever have thought to make the footage into a film? No. Would fans have purchased tickets in advance if he wasn’t dead? No. It seems that people are doing to Michael in death what his father did to him in life, trying to make a buck off of him.
Whether you think that this film is in poor taste or you think it’s a treasure and will launch Jackson’s talent to the forefront of his legacy, it will be interesting to see just how popular the film turns out to be and to hear what Joe Jackson has to say about the movie and of course his record label.