George Michael Freedom - The Directors Cut is a deeply autobiographical story of George Michael's life concentrating on the period around the making of his album "Listen Without Prejudice" ... See full summary »
This is a film documentary that George Michael was working on at the time of his sudden passing on Christmas Day 2016. The documentary was originally due to air in the UK in March 2017 to coincide with the re-release of the1990 Listen Without Prejudice album with the MTV Unplugged addition. Subsequently both were postponed until October 2017. George Michael's family released a statement to say that they will honour the releasing of music he was working on and had planned to release himself. See more »
"George Michael: Freedom" (2017 release from the UK; 95 min.) is another documentary about the life and times, but mostly the music, of George Michael. As the documentary opens, we touch briefly on Wham! before moving on to "Faith", and how its global success overwhelmed George Michael. By the time we move on to "Listen Without Prejudice", we are well into the documentary.
Couple of comments: this documentary is co-directed by David Austin (who has directed two previous documentaries on George Michael) and... George Michael himself. So if you are expecting to "get the dirt" on what George Michael really is like, you will be sorely disappointed. Instead, we get a chronological overview of the music in his solo career, with plenty of excerpts and correlating commentary by Michael himself and many other talking heads, including Elton John, Liam Gallagher, Mark Ronson, Mary J. Blige, Stevie Wonder, etc. You can pick up some interesting tidbits here and there (I never knew that George Michael wrote "Heal the Pain" as a tribute to Paul McCartney). Given that this documentary focuses on his solo career, there is no sight of or commentary by Andrew Ridgeley. While there are a couple of passages that discuss his personal relationships, that also is kept to a minimum. While his fight with Sony gets LOTS of screen time, other non-music incidents (such as his arrest in Hollywood) are left out entirely. So again, if you are looking for a more personal side of George Michael, this is the wrong documentary for you. If on the other hand you want to revisit some of Michael's best tunes and get the inside scoop of them, then this documentary will be right up your alley.
"George Michael: Freedom" premiered in the US recently on Showtime. I really didn't know what to expect, but nevertheless looked forward to catching it. Bottom line is this: "George Michael: Freedom" is pleasant viewing, no more, no less. But one day someone is going to make the definitive George Michael documentary, a la "Amy" by director Asif Kapadia.
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