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A new film draws inspiration from Michael Jackson's global reach
Michael Jackson died in 2009 and it may be hard for some to recall the days when he ruled the earth. Boy, a new film directed by Taika Waititi, returns us to 1984, the year of Thriller — which is just as inescapable in the tribal areas of Maori, New Zealand, as it is everywhere else. There, a young pre-teen named Alamein (after his father), but known only as"Boy," idolizes Michael Jackson and dreams of the return of the father he barely remembers, but who he fantasizes as a great adventurer. In fact the dad (played by the director) is in jail, and Boy, his younger brother Rocky, and numerous young cousins are all being raised by their grandmother. Accompanied by a few laconic stoners he calls "his gang," Alamein returns to his son's life while the grandmother is away for a week at a funeral. Alamein wants to find money he buried in a field near his mother's home, but is soon strutting about in high style as the man of the house.
By Donald Brown
April 10, 2012