Marley (Director: Kevin Macdonald): Toronto Screen Shots’ contributor Drew Kerr reviewed this towering documentary on the life of reggae superstar Bob Marley back in June and enthused:
[Macdonald’s] unprecedented access to such a wealth of previously untapped resources, and his judicious use of them…elevate this film to something truly special. More than 60 people were interviewed for the project and as informative as the contributions are from Marley’s fellow musicians, it’s the interviews with less obvious figures, such as Peter Marley (his white second cousin), Constance Marley (his half sister), Dudley Sibley (a recording artist and studio janitor who lived with Marley for a couple of years), and Cindy Breakspeare (Miss World 1976 and one of Marley’s mistresses) that notably help to humanize someone whose persona has taken on legendary proportions. Add in that obviously great musical catalogue from which to draw and Marley emerges as a veritable treasure trove for fans, as well as an important document of one of the 20th century’s most significant musical figures.
The DVD/Blu-ray combo pack that Amazon is selling of the film contains numerous special features, including:
- an extended interview with Bunny Wailer (18:52)
- “Children’s Memories” in which some of Marley’s children share stories about their father (9:56)
- “Listening to ‘I’m Loose'” is a scene of friends and family listening to a late recording session (3:41)
- “Around the World” captures Marley’s influence on fans all over the globe (18:29)
- concert footage from a 1975 performance at New York’s Manhattan Center, with the songs Natty Dread, Bend Down Low, and Them Belly Full (10:47)
This is a package that looks and, even more importantly, sounds great. If all you know of Marley is the greatest hits you’ve been hearing at Starbucks, you owe it to yourself to pick this up.