x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Michael Jackson's This Is It

Watching This Is It is a welcome reminder of what an extraordinarily talented artist Michael Jackson was.

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This Is It is all we have left of what was going to be, quite easily, one of the most anticipated concerts of all time. Given the amount of dirt and drama that surrounded Michael Jackson for half of his life, watching this documentary is a welcome reminder of what an extraordinarily talented artist the man was. It's surprising, and lovely, to see how normal - albeit painfully thin and fragile - Jackson appears as he goes through rehearsals. It's sad, however, given how things turned out, to see how deliriously happy the principal dancers, band and everyone else involved are at the prospect of working with the performer. The bonus disc has some great interviews with those involved, but everything is tinged with sadness, and it's disappointing that none of Jackson's music videos are included. The choreographer/director Kenny Ortega was heavily criticised for allowing the footage to be released, but for fans and non-fans alike, this is a wonderful insight into the man we all thought we knew so much about. If anything, it makes you appreciate his music all the more. In addition, watching the reaction he brings out in everyone is incredible, as is his ability to outperform dancers half his age. It's also touching to see how much of himself he put into making the show just right for the fans. This is it? Better than nothing at all.