I have to give this movie an A+.  It is an outstanding treatment of the history of Jamaica, the Caribbean cultural blossoming after World War II, possible equilibria in individual human affairs, and of course the protagonist Bob Marley himself, as well as much much more.  Marley by the way does not come off as a sympathetic character.  The scenes from Zimbabwe and Germany are remarkable.  The director is Kevin Macdonald, who also created The Last King of Scotland.

There are trailers here.  Here is one good review.  If you are seeking to normalize my review, in general I am not fond of “musical documentaries” and I do not consider Marley the peak of Jamaican music (I prefer Lee Perry, Desmond Dekker, and King Tubby, for a start).  Think of this as a movie flat out and go see it on a large screen.


For just a minute I thought you were talking about this movie:


And wasn't sure if the grade was a joke, or something to be very worried about.

Yeah, Marley's quite overrated. Last King of Scotland was good though, so that's a recommendation.

What does that statement even mean? Who has rated Bob Marley and then who decided his rating was too high?

Bob Marley's music is very accessible. But, people are fooling themselves if they think that just because college undergraduates like Marley so much, his music is somehow bad. I get it; you own a lot of other reggae albums other than Legend.

" I do not consider Marley the peak of Jamaican music (I prefer Lee Perry, Desmond Dekker, and King Tubby, for a start)."

Those things don't have to be mutually exclusive. Bob Marley & The Wailers recorded with Lee Perry. Not only that, the rhythm section of Lee Perry's house band, the Upsetters, became the rhythm section of Marley's backing band, namely, the Barrett brothers. Their work on drums and bass were pretty integral to the key sound of both guy's best work.

In general, you're making a list that combines musicians, singers, producers, and sound engineers (or even people who may have done a bit of each.) There are lots of recordings out there that feature various combinations of those names, and there's a lot more names one could add. It's hard to pin down the "magic" to one name or group.

All true, and Decker is barely discernible from early Marley, but how does that help the iconoclastic, contrarian branding? should he have listed Fathead and Josey Wales to score the points?

Agreed -- was scared of the running time, but it wasn't a struggle at all. The film looks great, and the talking heads reveal more about themselves than Marley. (Not to say that you don't learn quite a bit about the guy.)

Toots and the Maytals is where it's at, baby.

Gregory Isaacs aka the lonely lover (Night nurse, Feeling irie) and Barrington Levy (Black roses, Here I come) are good names to add to the list.

I always wondered what became of Kevin MacDonald after Kids in the Hall


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