Jesus Is King: A Kanye West Film ★★★★½

I went into this one about as dark as I possibly could - I knew it was a documentary and a Kanye West project related to the album that was released the same day.

I don't think I'm spoiling anything by saying it's pretty strictly a music video / concert film for a gospel choir directed by Kanye West. He's like barely there. We're not behind the scenes, there's nothing gossip-worthy, there's no plot, nobody's talking about anything, we're just looking at a performance film. So that's that. It doesn't have that much to do with the album released earlier in the day - while that is a gospel album (of a sort) it is a different set of songs. This is the choir experience.

That's how we arrive at 4.5 stars here. For what it's trying to be, it's exquisite. These people are the best in the world at what they do. The performances are breathtaking. The film is gorgeous and striking - meditative and colorful. That's different than me saying I loved it (it's not really for me, on most days) and it's very much different than me saying I'm recommending it. If you're intrigued you should probably check it out, but I think I'm painting a pretty clear picture of whether this is for you or not.

I could talk about the broader context forever, but I won't. (Kanye West is one of my favorite artists, partially because I find him confounding and fascinating and challenging, and this one of his most frustrating phases. I'm here for it, and I completely understand if you aren't.)

Dan liked this review