Once again, the Montreal International Black Film Festival could pride itself on welcoming American director and producer Spike Lee, this time to its 12th edition based around the theme Speak up!
Known for being a controversial and provocative filmmaker, Lee was in Montreal on October 1st to introduce his new documentary on the King of Pop, Michael Jackson’s Journey from Motown to Off the wall (2016).
Seven years after Michael Jackson’s death, Lee continues to show his admiration for the singer with a second documentary about his musical life. Bad 25, released by the filmmaker in 2012, already illustrated the influence of Jackson’s album Bad on his generation.
The first scene sets the tone for a feel-good movie: the ABC song displays the undefinable energy and star-like aura of this little boy who will not be aware of his influence on the music industry for years to come.
From Jackson’s debut with the Jackson 5 in Motown to his album Off the Wall (1979), Lee recounts the incredible evolution of the artist’s career. Lee’s documentary – which is structured as a series of interviews with artists/colleagues/friends of the star, with some of Jackson’s biggest hits in chronological order – comes as a film completely focused on the very first period of Jackson’s success, as well as the man’s art.