As expected, Michael Jackson’s “This is It” movie opened at the top of the box office this week. The film grossed 21 million dollars over the weekend and has grossed 33 million dollars since its’ midweek release. Sony Pictures has extended the movie’s release-previously, it was only scheduled for a two-week run, and now it will be running through Thanksgiving. Holiday shoppers? You won’t be able to get the DVD until early 2010…there’s a grace period between the time a movie hits theatres and the time it’s eligible to be released on DVD.

I was one of the folks who saw the movie on Wednesday night, and I have to admit, I was impressed. Michael had been sleepwalking through live performances since practically the early Nineties, so to see him singing live and fully involved in the production was a revelation.  To see him doing it well was…whatever the step beyond revelation is. The state of his nose and the fact that many of his recent public performances had been lip-synched led me to believe that his voice was shot Mariah Carey-style, but he was full-on belting some of these songs, and singing live on “Billie Jean” and “Beat It”-songs he hadn’t sung live even at the height of his success! I’m fully convinced that Michael was going to reclaim his crown with this set of shows. It’s sad that we’ll never get to see a fully realized version of the “This is It” show. Something tells me that it would have been quite a sight.

Even if you’re not a MJ fan, I’d check this film out, not only because there’s a strong chance that you will be converted, but also because I thought it was really cool to see the mechanics involved with a show being built. I could have done without the rampant ass-kissing from director Kenny Ortega. It’s very easy to picture the guy standing next to MJ on the toilet volunteering to wipe his ass for him.