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Genres are DocumentaryBiographyMu Produced in 2012, USA, UK
Available Quality: DivX
Rating: 8 out of 10 (124 votes)
|Ziggy Marley||Bob Marley||Chris Blackwell||Rita Marley|
|Bunny Wailer||Jimmy Cliff||Cedella Marley|
A documentary on the life, music, and legacy of Bob Marley.
19 May 2013
My limited knowledge of reggae culture comes mostly from my UB40collection and my recent discovery of Hassidic reggae artist Matisyahu.I therefore had no idea, for example, that Bob Marley died of cancer atage 36 (I thought he was shot dead). I had absolutely no clue that hewas mixed-race, and went by the moniker 'German boy' on account of hisWhite father. There was not much I did know about Jamaica's most famousfigure. No matter: Kevin Macdonald, the Scotsman who directed the excellent'The Last King of Scotland', does a superb job of educating people inmy position, and I have a feeling his superlative documentary will sateeven Marley's most ardent fans. This is one of the most joyous,interesting and educational documentaries I have ever seen. I wasutterly engrossed, in fact spellbound.The concert footage is mesmerising. Not many could generate as muchenergy without recourse to gimmicks. In rare and previously unseeninterview footage, we get a glimpse into the psyche of the man. He wasquite the philosopher. Everyone preaches peace and love, especiallysingers, but Bob practised it. That's why people in the most unlikelyplaces on Earth, as shown at the end, sing their hearts out to hissimple but powerful songs. I learned about Rastafarianism, the politics and history of Jamaica,the origins and influence of reggae music and, of course, about thedocumentary's primary subject, Robert Nesta Marley. His ascent wasridiculously unlikely, given his impoverished background, lack ofdirection and mixed heritage. If you were a religious person, as hewas, you might say divinity had a part to play. I can't say whether he was a genius, but I don't hesitate to call him asuperior human being. He genuinely wanted to see the two rival partiesin Jamaica (the People's National Party and the Jamaican Labour Party)unite under his synonymous phrase, 'One love'. Yet he had no politicalagenda; only a humanist agenda. The man even took a bullet for hisbelief and didn't let the material prospect of assassination deter him. It is so hard not to be infected by the brio of the interviewees,particularly Rita Marley, his uniquely tolerant widow and fellowWailer, who put up with Bob's notorious philandering when mostwouldn't. 'Who didn't want him?' is her rhetorical rationale. EvenJamaican Miss World, Cindy Breakspeare, couldn't say no. He loved football, his country, music, culture, women. He loved life.He loved people. That's why, when you hear his songs, it's impossiblenot to smile and, as he sings, 'don't worry about a thing, cuzeverything gonna be alright'. www.moseleyb13.com
18 May 2013
Brilliant, Excellent, Oscar-worthy
Until I saw "Marley" at the Sonoma International Film Festival lastweekend, I knew little about the reggae star but liked a lot of hismusic.Director Kevin MacDonald was nominated for an Oscar for "The Last Kingof Scotland," the excellent film about Ugandan dictator Idi Amin.MacDonald won an Oscar for the documentary "One Day in September." Hehas directed a number of fine films, but none any finer than this gem. This is an excellent biography of a musical genius, who died veryyoung. While he lived, he was a force of nature. What is particularlydelicious about this film is the sound. There is a lot of musicthroughout, much of it in the background, but in the foreground are thepeople who knew and played with Bob Marley. The Jamaican language makesthe film very compelling. There are sub-titles which translate Englishinto English. The language adds so much to understanding why Reggae iswhat it is.This is a fine film, an artistic achievement and a fitting tribute to agreat musician. See it, if you have even a passing interest in reggaeor Bob Marley.
16 May 2013
Jonathan Demme and Martin Scorsese were both earmarked to direct at one time, but Macdonald and his team certainly know how to make the movie sing.
16 May 2013
A Brief Life, Well Lived.
This is a very good film about an astonishing man. I rarely throw theword 'genius' around loosely, but I truly believe that's what BobMarley was. There are a few musicians who died far too early and youwonder what they might have gone on to achieve had they lived longer...Buddy Holly, Mozart, Lennon and Bob Marley. Still, he packed quite alot into his 36 years, before his tragically early death from cancer in1981, and has left the world a wonderful catalog of music along with 11(or was it 12?) children. Bob Marley is truly an internationalsuperstar, possibly even more famous in death than he was in life. Themusic transcends cultural boundaries in a way that little else does.This movie directed by Kevin Macdonald traces Bob Marley's life fromhis very humble beginnings in St Anne's Parish Jamaica, through a moveto Kingston, a brief early stint in Delaware USA and extended periodsin London, interviewing those who knew him best; fellow musicians inhis band, his wife and several girl friends, some of his children, anearly teacher, his Mum, record producers, even politicians. Marleydidn't invent Reggae, but he took it to the world, and the many, manysongs he wrote carried his personal message of peace and love, and italso became the medium of his desire to see his fellow men and womenworld wide getting along better together. He was a modest man andgenerous to a fault, giving away swathes of money to help others inJamaica. He was a perfectionist, making his band rehearse for longhours to perfect what looked effortless and laid back on stage. What hewanted more than anything was to get his music and his message of love,out to the world.And, it has to be said, when women threw themselves at him, he rarelyturned them away. But no one seemed jealous, least of all Rita hiswife, although I suspect that her generous acceptance of his wanderingways probably hurt more than she let on, then or now. His daughtercomes across as somewhat bitter, lamenting that even at his death, hisfamily didn't really get quality time alone with him, Bob wanted toshare himself with the world.The seventies, the height of Marley's creativity, coincided with a timeof dreadful political violence and rivalry in Jamaica, and Marley,although he never aligned himself with any party or leader, survived anattempt on his life. He fled with his band to the UK for some peace andquiet, producing some of his best music at this time and embarking ontours that took his fame worldwide. And it was in London that he firstencountered the melanoma that was eventually to spread to his lungs andbrain. Had he accepted the advice of doctors and had his toe amputated,he might be alive today, but he loved football (ie soccer to my USreaders) so much that he was afraid a missing toe might affect hisability to play, and to dance on stage. Invited back to Jamaica, theonly person capable of bringing any peace to the warring politicalfactions, he staged one of his most memorable concerts, free inKingston, and managed to get both leaders on stage, shaking hands.After doctors gave up on his cancer, he went to Germany for a lastditch effort at turning back the tide at a controversial holisticclinic. But the cancer was too advanced, spread all over his frailbody. He died in Miami in May 1981, a mere 36 years old.Yet today, Bob Marley is an iconic figure around the world, the firstgreat planet-wide music star to come from a developing country. "Getup, stand up, stand up for your rights" is a rallying cry in slumseverywhere. My own personal favorite has to be One Love, his anthem tothe union of the world's people. The only thing I find problematic ishis adoration of Haili Selassi, late emperor of Ethiopia, a small andinconsequential man as far as I can see. But maybe it's my loss, andMarley saw something I have missed. And I haven't even touched on thehuge ganja intake, that can hardly have aided his lungs.In fact I have barely touched on so many elements of this film and ofBob Marley himself. Just go see. Great movie, great man.
16 May 2013
Tremendously moving film -- see it in the theater
I'm old enough to have dug Bob Marley when he was actually alive andperforming. AND I was fortunate enough to produce some jingles in TuffGong Studio for Air Jamaica. So I was around the scene, post-Marley,and I played his music endlessly for a decade or two.Then I discovered salsa, and Latin Jazz, and the Afro-Cuban sound, andlet my Marley go.Well, now I have my Marley back. This film took me into parts ofTrenchtown, Kingston, Jamaica that I have never seen and never want tosee. Even after reading Timothy White's marvelous biography of Marley,"Catch A Fire," I couldn't imagine how horrible Trenchtown was untilthis movie.It gave me a deep appreciation for how far this young man traveled inhis tragically brief time on this particular planet. He wasn't nice, he wasn't easy, but he was brilliantly talented andsurrounded himself with other talented, fascinating people. Yes, folksare moaning about the movie not having enough music, but ... it haslots of heart and conversation and laughs and empathetic understandingof the Marley story -- and the story of Jamaica, one of the mostbeautiful and agonizing places I have ever been. I can't recommend thisfilm highly enough. (Gosh, I hope there are no spoilers here. Can youwrite a spoiler for a documentary of a widely known figure?)
15 May 2013
One good thing about music
Â when it hits, you feel no pain. Excellent job on this documentary to Mr. Macdonald. I probably wouldhave been a bit restless sitting through this in a theater, as heprobably could have trimmed about 20 minutes off for my overallenjoyment, but since I watched it on DVD, it was a nice viewing over a2 day stretch.Going in, I felt I knew quite a bit about the life of Bob Marley, but Icame away knowing a whole bunch more. The shots of poverty strickenTrench Town really make you appreciate what a privilege your everydayUSA upbringing was compared to what it's like for others around theworld (including poor Jamaicans), and the last 25 minutes leading up tohis death were quite moving, as I never knew about his stretch inGermany just before he passed.Macdonald really did a great job finding all these interviewees whowere related to or knew the man, and got them all the to open upseemingly at ease. For example, I never also knew his daughter withRita (Cedella) was an actress, who I subsequently discovered was thelead in an indie movie filmed in NYC in the mid-nineties. The bit aboutThe (latter day) Wailers opening for The Commodores to attract a biggerblack following in the US was also new to me. And it was sure waschilling to hear them discuss the assassination attempt in 1976.My only other real quibble is the lack of discussion about variousfamous albums, their legacy, and/or tracks on them. I've always lovedalbums, even as they seem to have become an afterthought since the dawnof the internet has pretty much made people quit buying them. Eventhough we heard most of these songs playing on the soundtrack and manyof them are somewhat self-explanatory from the words, I wanted to hearmore about the origin of and making of:"Exodus", "Kaya", I Shot the Sheriff, Is this Love, Buffalo Soldier,Iron Lion Zion, Waiting in Vain, Could You Be Loved, and a few othercuts.But do check this out, and it's well worth the time spent.
09 May 2013
Up there with No Direction Home and The Filth and the Fury, Marley is one of the greatest ever historical music documentaries.
09 May 2013
Well Detailed Look at the Musician
Marley (2012) *** 1/2 (out of 4) Director Kevin Macdonald epic look at music legend Bob Marley followshim from his early days to his rise in music and eventually his deathat the age of 36. Through concert, interview and audio footage, we getto hear from Marley throughout his life and of course there's a lot ofattention given to the music but there's also a lot aimed at Marley'slifestyle and his hopes for the future. We also get interviews with hisson, daughter, mother, wife as well as countless band members andothers who knew him personally. At 142-minutes, this thing certainlypacks in a lot of information and I think die-hard Marley fans aregoing to really love this thing. There's no question that nearly everyaspect of his life is covered from his early childhood, to hiswomanizing and of course the final few months of his life. The filmreally does an exceptional job at giving you a complete look at the manand it doesn't shy away or try to hide his darker side or moments thataren't as good and fun. The documentary really shows him as a completehuman, which is something a lot of these films miss. Those who are justmild fans or are just wanting quick look at how Marley was might findthis to be a bit too long but I do feel this was made for die-hard fanswho want to know everything. I really enjoyed all of the concertfootage that they added because one gets a great idea of what Marleywas like on stage. Of course, countless songs are on full display here,which is another major plus. Certain aspects of Marley's life getsadditional attention here including the Smile Jamaica Concert and himgetting shot before hand. Also, the final months of Marley's life alsogets additional scenes and it's still shocking to see him dying soyoung.
08 May 2013
20 years after the release of "Time Will Tell", I was expectingsomething more, and maybe better, but this film was a real letdown.Other than a few personal anecdotes, most notably from Bob'shalf-sister and cousin, there is nothing new here that we haven't heardbefore. Also, the editing of live concert footage was rather insulting. Thedirector would splice audience shots from different concerts, which Ifound very annoying and dishonest. Stylistically, the documentary lacked the allure that really gooddocumentaries have, like "The Two Escobars", or "The Fog of War"...This was more of a meat and potatoes effort.This was a movie produced by the Marley's, and is clearly just anothermoney grab by them. If you haven't seen "Time Will Tell", go watch it, it's much better. But better yet, if you love Bob Marley and the Wailers, and really wantgood info, read the book "Catch a Fire", by Timothy White, it'sfantastic.
07 May 2013
A beautiful man with a big heart and an amazing message.
Marley is a moving, and a very touching film. That could sum up thisfilm review. I will say this is a must watch for all music/human rightsfan. We should all be reminded and learn from Bob's actions and hislove. The movie was very touching and really brought out emotions Iwasn't expecting. Great watching his transformation. He loved hisfellow man, and that really comes through this great film. I wish Icould have seen him perform live. This film let's us in a little to hislive performance and his day to day life. Great to see all the lovesurrounding this man, and his ability to reunite a country and itpeople-Amazing!! What an incredible man who embraced the human spirit.I love Mr.Bob Marley more than ever.
02 May 2013
I was a little weary of watching Marley (2012) because I felt thateverything that has been said about Bob Marley has been said yet Marleyis a fantastic documentary.If there is a little gripe, then I would say that the partnershipbetween The Wailers and Lee "Scratch" Perry is left conspicuouslyunexplored. It must be remembered that The Wailers first proper studioalbum, Soul Rebels (1970) produced by Perry, became a serious bone ofcontention between the band and Perry.That said, the interviews are enlightening and often amusing. Theinterview with Cedella Marley, Bob's Daughter, is rather sad as sheobviously retains a level of bitterness towards her Father.Highly recommended.
01 May 2013
Out of darkness
Who never heard of Bob Marley? Probably, not many people. Who reallyknows Marley's story? Probably, not many people also. This documentaryaims to be complete and without complacency. I believe it attains itsgoals as much as it is possible with such subject matter. All ofMarley's life and death are displayed. Born in abject poverty,ostracized for being born to a white father passing through and a blackmother; this man elevated himself over the masses and became a symbolfor brotherhood and liberty. Marlye is not shown as sympathetic but sovery charming, as it is often the case among the greats. Marley createda whole new genre of music, Reggae. This is quite a feat. Marley is afilm to see and appreciate at many levels.
30 April 2013
I'd have preferred more of the material presented during the final credits, a montage showing Marley's influence and fanbase in different parts of the globe.
30 April 2013
Beyond the Mascot, The Man (and His Faults) in Marley
I spotted a bottle of something called Marley's Mellow Mood, "a newline of 100 percent natural relaxation beverages," in my neighborhooddeli just a few hours after seeing Kevin Macdonald's documentary on thereggae and Rasta emissaryÂa reminder of just how crassly the Jamaicanlegend, who died of cancer in 1981 at 36, has been commodified, asanyone who has ever spent more than an hour in a college dorm canattest. Fortunately, MarleyÂcreated, like the drink, with thecooperation of the singer's familyÂavoids (until the closing credits)oversimplified one-love- praise-Jah sloganeering. Thoroughly researchedand packed with phenomenal archival footage, it's a rousing tribute toa...Read the full review here: http://www.villagevoice.com/movies/
24 April 2013
Out of focus
So I am a Bob Marley fan. Not that I can tell you all the dates ofalbum releases etc but I know his music, I know his lyrics and I gethis message. The problem with this film was it's focus was wrong. Ifelt much more focus should have been given to Bob's message andcontextualised more in society then and now. For example Bob was aboutblack unity, the film hinted at the racism that exists in the UK, ithinted at CIA interest in Bob but it never went into any depth at whyBob felt black unity was such an issue. Virtually no world politics wasdiscussed. No parallel movements such as the black panther party werementioned etc. None of his most political songs were played....thismatters because this is truly what Bob was about. Far too much time wasspent talking about his relationships with various women, it seemedthis was there to add to our feelings of moral superiority. I justdon't think it was particularly relevant, after all this was supposedto be serious documentary not a feature in a gossip magazine. Bob wasabout awakening people to truth and I think the film failed to do this.Having said that it is still worth watching for the footage and some ofthe early interview segments in the documentary.
23 April 2013
Loved the film, have been waiting for a film like this for years. I wassurprised to learn new things, as well as inspired by the elements ofthe females within the band and of course, the music. As a guitar player, it made me want to learn reggae guitar , thankfullya friend gifted me a cool app for learning reggae(http://appshopper.com/music/reggae-guitar). Hope the film has extras on the DVD or follow ups due to fans interest.I would have liked to hear more about the origins of famous tunes andmore live performances. If i were to give the film a rating out of 10stars, i would have to give the film a 10 star rating! very enjoyableand thank you for looking!
22 April 2013
My limited knowledge of reggae culture comes mostly from my UB40collection and my recent discovery of Hassidic reggae artist Matisyahu(I cannot recommend this guy highly enough). I therefore had no idea,for example, that Bob Marley died of cancer at age 36 (I thought he wasshot dead; although I assumed a Sheriff wasn't involved). I hadabsolutely no clue that he was mixed-race and went by the moniker'German boy' on account of his White father. There was not much I didknow about Jamaica's most famous figure. No matter: Kevin Macdonald, the Scotsman who directed the excellent'The Last King of Scotland', does a superb job of educating people inmy position, and I have a feeling his superlative documentary will sateeven Marley's most ardent fans. This is one of the most joyous,interesting and educational documentaries I have ever seen. I wasutterly engrossed; in fact spellbound.The concert footage is mesmerising. Not many could generate as muchenergy without recourse to gimmicks and supporting artists. In rare andpreviously unseen interview footage, we get a glimpse into the psycheof the man. He was quite the philosopher. Everyone preaches peace andlove, especially singers; but Bob practised it. That's why people inthe most unlikely places on Earth, to this day, sing their hearts outto the simple but powerful words Â messages Â of his unique songs. I learned about Rastafarianism, the politics and history of Jamaica,the origins and influence of reggae music and, of course, about thedocumentary's primary subject, Robert Nesta Marley. His ascent wasridiculously unlikely, given his impoverished background, lack ofdirection and mixed heritage. If you were a religious person, as hewas, you might say divinity had a part to play. I can't say whether he was a genius, but I don't hesitate to call him asuperior human being. He genuinely wanted to see the two rival partiesin Jamaica (the People's National Party and the Jamaican Labour Party)unite under his synonymous phrase, 'one love', yet he had no politicalagenda; only a humanist agenda. The man even took a bullet for hisbelief and didn't let the material prospect of assassination deter him. It is so hard not to be infected by the brio of the interviewees,particularly Rita Marley, his uniquely tolerant widow and fellowWailer, who put up with Bob's notorious philandering when mostwouldn't. 'Who didn't want him?' is her rhetorical rationale. EvenJamaican Miss World, Cindy Breakspeare, couldn't say no. He loved football, his country, music, culture, women. He loved life.He loved people. That's why, when you hear his songs, it's impossiblenot to smile and, as he sings, 'don't worry about a thing, cuzeverything gonna be alright'. www.moseleyb13.com
22 April 2013
Warm, Complex and Genuine, Just Like its Subject
One of the most exhaustively-researched biographical docus I've everseen, and nary a moment of its two-plus-hour runtime is wasted. Packedwith honest, revealing, enlightening face-to-face chats with everymajor player in Bob Marley's story, this candid tell-all effectivelycaptures the social impact of his work on-stage and in-studio, alongwith the intimate details of his private life. It doesn't take muchprodding to realize that before we can fully comprehend one, we mustalso understand the other. Dedicated apostles of the icon shouldwelcome the personal insights, while more passive appreciators arebound to be staggered by the power of his voice on multiple levels -musical, political, religious and intellectual. Warm, complex andgenuine, just like its subject - I can appreciate his work on a wholenew level today.
21 April 2013
Interesting music doco
I work with a GenYer who once asked me who I was listening to on myiPod, when I said "Bob Marley" and she said "Who?" my brain exploded.Marley is a legend. This film proves that, so perhaps I should make herwatch it. Using archival footage, plenty of his infectious music and interviewswith family and friends, we learn about Marley and the incredible lifehe led that was unfortunately cut so short.His music transcends time and borders and I was fascinated to learn ofhis impact on peace processes in his native Jamaica and parts ofAfrica. Just like his music, he was about peace and love.Unfortunately the screening I was at was missing some subs in a coupleof German and French language scenes, which was annoying. Some of theRastafarian could have used some subs as well! I enjoyed the ride and learning more about someone I knew little about,other than that I play his music on repeat on a sunny Sunday afternoon.Recommended if you are fan of music doco's, Marley himself or you justlike to learn about people of influence.
21 April 2013
Absolutely brilliant, the best Bob Marley documentary made, showing hiswhole life from the beginning as a poor boy from nine mile, Jamaica tobecome one of the greatest musicians to ever live. till the end of hisvery short life when he died from cancer which had spread to all partsof his body which had resulted from a disease in his big toe which henever attended regular check-ups. Bob Marley also brought to the earsof people all over the planet knowledge and teachings of Jamaica,Reggae, Rasta and Peace & Love. A fitting tribute to one of history'sgreatest musical prophets... R.I.P. Robert Nesta Marley.