Michael Jackson's This Is It
That's really all I can say. Let's just face facts if you don't like Michael Jackson you will hate this film. This film is not for you. If you are a fan of Michael Jackson's music and appreciate him as a gifted dancer and you wanted a film showing a final glimpse of him doing it: This is it!
I never watched This Is It at the cinema and I am kind of glad of this because at times I felt like saying 'Just get to the next song'. Though I appreciate the people discussing how the cherry picker works or the auditions of dancers, it really wasn't necessary. We are not here for them, we are here for Michael. The footage is a little rough and ready and so you can tell that this was never created for the intention of being released and yet at times this is as good as most filmed concerts that have been released. As it was not meant for release some of the songs are cut short with Michael flubbing the words for some, but what you get is almost a blooper moment of him smiling at his mistake. Some people have said that he would not want someone watching something that wasn't perfect and I agree to some extent. However, I can only assume that there were no perfect takes and so the Director and Editors were just making do with what they had. Filmed sequences for Smooth Criminal (that include sections from old gangster films starring Humphrey Bogart) and a new opening section for Thriller showed just how much work was going into these shows.
This DVD can almost be seen as two documentaries. The main feature is all the footage put together and the extras are really the analysis of what these concerts were going to mean not just to Michael, but for his fans, for the production people and for all the dancers and singers.
The extras focus on the behind the scenes and also look at the aftermath since the death of Michael and cancellation of the shows that apparently sold out in less than an hour with hundreds of thousands of people still wanting tickets. They don't go into any of the controversy, but they do all imply that the fact these concerts never happened is such a loss. This is true. Watching him sing and dance you get the feeling that if this was Jackson in rehearsals the real performance would have been amazing. What I did find strange was that the cast did not do a full run through of the show, whether it was rough or not with the Director calling the cues for where effects etc would have gone in. It would have been nice to have seen what the show would have been like, but this is probably as close as we are going to get.
This Is It is not a great film to watch and if you don't like Jackson then you'll hate it. But if you did enjoy his music and are able to ignore the rumours and allegations then this is a nice look at what could have been and what would have been possibly the greatest run of shows by any performer. As I say to me watching Jackson in this film was fascinating. This was not the creepy child dangling, molesting monster the media made him out to be, this was a man who just wanted to entertain and if you want proof of that: this is it!