Genius. The Short Films of Michael Jackson
By Elizabeth Amisu
‘Where everything is bad
it must be good
to know the worst.’
– F.H. Bradley
Michael Jackson starred in and produced upwards of forty films in a career which showcases many of the most watched short films of all time. The four-minute sequence often perceived to be Bad (dir. Martin Scorsese, 1987) is in fact the epicentre of a much longer narrative. Parodied in Moonwalker (dir. Jerry Kramer, 1988) in the spirit of Bugsy Malone (dir. Alan Parker, 1976), it is nevertheless targeted towards adults. Richard Price’s screenplay was inspired by a 1985 shooting and explores several complex themes.
This essay on Bad is a free chapter from my follow-up to the Dangerous Philosophies, ‘Genius’. Originally published in July, I’ve reposted it again to give you a chance to revisit Bad, the short film.