This Is It

Rated 4.0

Director Kenny Ortega, a creative partner on Michael Jackson’s ill-fated farewell concert, cobbles together high-def rehearsal video (originally intended for a DVD), and more elaborate scenes meant to screen during the concert, into a farewell documentary celebrating Jackson’s prodigious gifts and his effect on his many fans (illustrated with interviews of Jackson’s backup singers and dancers, all born and raised under the shadow of his career). The movie is unapologetically worshipful, but it delivers. Jackson dances with energy and agility that belie his 50 years, and he sings with a precision from one rehearsal take to another that betrays a prerecorded vocal track. It looks like this was going to be one bodacious concert, but the morbid finality of the title tells us to be grateful for what we’ve got.