Music Fan film Series Presents Soul Power

Music Fan film Series Presents Soul Power

Wednesday, February 21st, 2018

7:15 pm | PG-13 | 1h 32min | Documentary, Music | (2008)

In Zaire, James Brown, B.B. King, Miriam Makeba, the Spinners and others perform in a three-day concert preceding 1974’s “Rumble in the Jungle” boxing match between Muhammad Ali and George Foreman. Among the songs performed are “Soul Power,” “One of a Kind (Love Affair),” “The Click Song” and “Payback.”

Music played on stage makes up for about half of the running time. The rest comprises documentary clips about the event, including footage of the musicians, and behind-the-scenes planning such as the stage set-up. The DVD release also includes longer clips with jam sessions, and interviews with local citizens.

James Brown performs at the beginning of the film and sings two songs in the end; another of his performances is included as a bonus feature on the DVD. Brown is also shown behind the scenes, and the musicians are seen mixing with the boxers.

Many of the artists express their views about Black Power and their role in it. Unsurprisingly Muhammad Ali uses his screen presence before the fight intensively not only to speak about imperialism and the like but also about how important it is for the movement that he will surely win. Since Foreman was delayed on account of an injury he could not appear in time for the festival and only footage from Ali could be used. We can see a short funny box fight between Philippe Wynne from The Spinners and Ali, as well as a comparison of New York City with Kinshasa by Ali calling NYC the “real” jungle.