Finally managed to catch up a show of “This is it” at Inox on a Monday afternoon. During the show felt hard pressed to define my feelings : sadness and grief, happiness and the mood to dance, mesmerized by MJs voice, and an analytical part that saw a scrawny MJ with his signature moves.
First glance looked like documentary about the making of the show, part reality, part footage of rehearsals felt like a movie about the craft and art of making a celebrity concert. But was far more than that a chance to look at MJ, a world class concert, favorite songs and a farewell to a icon that defined my generation. From the reality show like selection of the background dancers to MJ being at the final auditions in person, MJs love for this craft shows.
The almost perfect moves executed to perfection by the backdrop dancers who pop up from below stage still can’t compare to Jackson’s moves. A skinny body with the microphone receivers jutting out from his back, Michael wears silver colored jackets and golden pants with t-shirts that are outstanding!!!
Doesn’t look tired, harassed , under pressure, on a lot of medication, wasted or unhealthy. In fact he looks on top of his craft as he belts out almost all his songs for the rehearsals.
Sings with a lot of love and perfection all his signature songs with an almost perfect elan and non nonchalance.
Showing his wizardry with amazing insights into how he wants his cues, the music, and the lights , he is at his best in wanting to give the audience a time of their lives. The way he admonishes his band for not letting it simmer or he tells them to make it less funky, MJ shows care and concern . Even when annoyed the metaphors MJ uses “like someone’s fist in my inner ear “to get the music right show how he hears and feels his music down to his soul .
The way the other band members call him sir and the way they give him feedback is amazing. A lollipop chewing MJ reviewing the videos of the shoot is almost comical and shows him in a different light. At 50, MJ looks in pretty good shape and still moves with the same gliding, smooth, graceful and energetic moves. His criticism is always “with love, L.O.V.E”……. as he spells out the words L O V E you can almost feel his desire to spread love with the world through his music.
Kennny Ortega, the director of the high School musical does come out with some innovative tricks for the concert from the re-shot thriller montage in 3D, a black spider that MJ emerges from, to an actual Bulldozer that appears behind MJ. Ortega’s care of his star performer and the amount of concern for the stars frailty and need for perfection is very visible.
Kenny Ortega’s voice as the screen goes dark asking someone to ready with a flashlight for MJ at backstage, asking MJ if he needs water might be deft editing to show himself in a good light after the superstars death . However the amazing way in which he delivers feedback to MJ is very touching. In short for Kenny as the Co creator of the concert tour and the Director of “This is it” leaves a mark.
Though his non believers and critics might choose to see some parts where MJ appears frail and demanding, the people around him sycophantic, and his eccentricities, curious rants about things not matching up to his perfection as his failings.
The stamina isn’t there but the moves are all right. Excellence and success that he sees only as love are very visible. At the end of the day this is only footage of rehearsals and the voice that hypnotized is still at the top, the entertainer performer par excellence is more than the king of Pop.
MJ comes across as the perfectionist, caring and very detail oriented entertainer that wants to deliver a life changing, best time concert to his audience is very visible. The love that he shows and that forms part of his work and interactions is awe inspiring. For a movie shot out of rehearsals shots and footage of the making of the concert, the chance to see MJ perform, dance and entertain for the last time for a fan (or cynic) is truly an experience. How can you truly be dead when you live on through your music in a million hears for my generation and possible the next you were and always be THE GOD OF POP.
I for one saw this is it as a tribute and loved it immensely.