What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Marley is an excellent and comprehensive documentary on the iconic reggae musician. Unsurprising to those familiar with Marley, reggae music, and the Rastafarian religion, there are frequent pictures and videos where Marley and his band The Wailers are smoking marijuana, and there is discussion about marijuana and its role in Marley's life and Jamaican culture. There is also frank discussion of Marley's numerous affairs; he had 11 children with seven different women while married. To provide necessary context, viewers see news footage of the sometimes violent civil unrest in Jamaica in the 1970s. However, none of this overshadows the central message of the film: Bob Marley was a deeply spiritual man dedicated to making others happy with his music, and to using his music as an instrument to promote peace, unity, and love.
- Families can talk about the power of art and music. What does this documentary say about music and its power to transcend cultures and politics? What role does art play in politics throughout history?
- What challenges do you think the filmmakers faced in presenting Bob Marley's life and music, as well as Jamaican culture, religion, and politics?
- What are the different cinematic tools the filmmakers use to tell Bob Marley's story? Which do you think are the most effective?