Marley, as in Bob Marley


Marley is a documentary chronicling Bob Marley’s life and accomplishments made in 2012.

“The contact spans over the life and musical career of Bob Marley, mainly as seen through the eyes of those who knew him and contributed to the documentary, including Bunny Wailer, Rita Marley, Lee “Scratch” Perry and many others.” (Film Summary)

Bob Marley lived from 1945-1981. He produced his first song at sixteen years old in 1961. This was around the time that the Rastafarian lifestyle was starting to take root in Jamaica. The music originally stemmed from ska music, but the beat was changed and reggae music was created. During the 70’s their was much political unrest in Jamaica. Political violence was on the rise. Throughout the violence, Bob Marley continued to travel back to his homeland to provide memorable and important peace concerts. He famously invited opposing sides on stage to join hands after the violence had ended.

Bob Marley was as much a symbol as his music. He used both his music and his money to people’s worlds. During an interview he was asked if he had made a lot of money through his music. He responded by asking “how much is a lot of money.” He was then asked if he was rich and he said “what do you mean by rich.” The interviewer reworded his question, “do you have a lot of possessions, money in the bank?” Bob Marley responded by telling the interviewer “possessions don’t make you rich, my richness is life.” Where did all the money that he made go then? People used to line up at this door to tell him about their struggles and he would give them his money.

The film is biased in some ways, but fair in others. As far as the views of his love life, it is fair because you get views from his children, wife, girlfriends and himself. In other ways it is very biased. Essentially everyone in the movie partakes in the Rastafarian lifestyle. There is no real view against the lifestyle presented.

I personally choose to look into this topic becuase I find Bob Marley’s life to be interesting but also illusive. When I started watching the movie, my roommate asked me how Bob Marley died and I realized that I didn’t even know. I know so much about his work, I have a tattoo of one his quotes, but when it came down to it, I didn’t know that much about him as a person.

I am very glad that I took the chance to watch this documentary. It is amazing how many things he was good at in life. He truly embodied the title of a role model. Some may argue with this however. A large point of debate in relation to Bob Marley has to do with the Rastafarian support of smoking marijuana. It is not legal in Jamaica, nor was it legal in the United States. Many people were not able to overlook this aspect of his lifestyle to see the amazing things that this man has done with his life. He truly lived by his word, giving everything her had to better the lives of others. He put others safety and the peace of nations above his own safety. He played a show the night after him and members of his group were shot.

 “He believed that you can cure-actually cure hate and raceme, by injecting it with love and music. Two days before Bob Marley was supposed to perform he was shot. Two days later he walked on stage and perfumed. They asked him in an interview why he didn’t rest, and he said “the people that are trying to make the world worse never take a day off, why should I.” (I Am Legend)

If I were to further research Bob Marley and his life I would start with looking more into the Rastafarian religion and lifestyle. While I now know a lot about Bob Marley and how he participated in the lifestyle I do not know that much about the actual religion itself. I would also want to look into the opinions of people who did not support Bob Marley at the time. The movies bias in this aspect makes me curios to look into the other side. While I do not personally see the legitimacy in the argument, it is important to at least acknowledge and understand the other side.


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