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Jay Z - Fade to Black (2005)

Jay-Z , Rick Rubin , Michael John Warren , Patrick Paulson  |  R |  DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)

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Jay Z - Fade to Black + Jay-Z: Streets Is Watching + Jay Z - The True Story: Unauthorized Documentary
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Product Details

  • Actors: Jay-Z, Rick Rubin, Missy Elliott, Fonzworth Bentley, Memphis Bleek
  • Directors: Michael John Warren, Patrick Paulson
  • Producers: Jay-Z, Andrew Fried, Frank Scherma, John Meneilly, Jon Kamen
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, Widescreen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Dubbed: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: April 5, 2005
  • Run Time: 109 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0006Q93D8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,693 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Jay Z - Fade to Black" on IMDb

Special Features


Editorial Reviews

Fade to Black is a document of Jay-Z’s self-proclaimed final concert; a grand affair that took place before a sold-out crowd at New York’s Madison Square Garden in November 2003. (But anyone who follows celebrity news knows that Jay-Z was out of retirement and back performing at the Garden just a year later.) Fade to Black is a legitimately powerful record of a truly historic event in the annals of rap. Muttering offhand narration with typical bored, streetwise affect, Jay hails the concert as a momentous occasion for being the first time a hip-hop show was allowed to headline at the Garden.

It’s unlikely that the full impact of the live performances will hit home to viewers unfamiliar with Jay-Z and his Roc-A-Fella Records stable of artists. Another frustration is trying to identify the array of visitors who trade raps on Jay’s stage. Included in the star-studded lineup are Missy Elliott, Foxy Brown, Pharell, Ghostface Killah, Beanie Sigel, Memphis Bleek, and R. Kelly. One unmistakable figure--and we do mean figure--is Jay’s squeeze Beyonce, who raises the temperature and the roof with her skimpy outfit, flowing hair, soulful yowl, and sexed-up dance routine that leaves her boyfriend and the whole of Madison Square Garden slack-jawed with animal desire.

Twenty cameras captured the event, and some of the most powerful sequences are sweeping moves across the swirling, blissed-out masses as they lip sync along in perfect unison with Jay-Z’s complex, profane, quick-witted raps. Less effective are intermittent cutaway segments that show the artist in various studio settings working up beats and rhymes. These amateurish home video breaks may give some insight to Jay’s perfectionism and dedication to his craft, but they detract from the visceral power of the beautifully executed performance footage. --Ted Fry

Product Description

FADE TO BLACK takes a look at the rapper’s career, providing a backstage glimpse during the concert and showing how his last album was conceived. Narrated by Jay-Z himself, the film features notable guest performances by Beyonce, Missy Elliott, Mary J. Blige, R. Kelly, Pharrell Williams, Foxy Brown and appearances by P. Diddy and 2004 Grammy-winner Kanye West.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars New Found Respect April 9, 2005
By C. Gray
This is definitely a must-have for a Jay-Z fan. The film combines footage of Hov's farewell Madison Square Garden concert along with scenes involving the completion of the Black Album. The concert was surprisingly well-performed and energized by several guest stars that pay Jay respectful homage by their sheer presence, as well as lighting up the stage with their vocal collaborations. When Beyonce` pops-up to perform three songs, Jigga's facial affections are an unrehearsed mix of love, appreciation, and admiration. Things only get better when Ghostface joins Beyonce` to perform "Summertime". Behind-the-scene footage depicting the guests as they prepare to take stage enhances each duet, as well as amplifying the significance of their unique talents. The movie does a great job in capturing the emotions of the loving crowd who hang on Jay's every verse. As for the star himself, he performs in a manner exceeding his personal hype. Despite the "me-me-me" subject matter of the majority of his songs, he proves to be an impeccable lyricist and stage performer. He is clearly aware that a song is nothing without the accompanying image. Interestingly, the superstar image is basically shed as the movie presents a few studio sessions depicting Jay as he completes the Black Album. Instead of the rap icon in front of his admiring 20,000 audience, the viewer is presented with a calculating and introspective genius working within the rather crude elements of his craft. Watching Jay as he deciphers beats and formulates his lyrics is worth the price of the DVD alone.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars New found respect September 3, 2005
I have never been a big fan of Jay-Z, not enough to actually purchase an album. I've learned lyrics to the radio cuts and I respect him for being very witty and nice with the beats. Well, this movie is awesome. So many star-studded cameos, the behind the scenes footage of his actual songwriting in his head,a story of an intelligent man who came from the bottom to the top via hip-hop. This guy doesn't write anything down and he flows like leaky water faucets. I stayed glued to the TV and the concert seemed well worth my sleep time trying to finish it off in a couple of hours. I wanted to buy every CD he ever made here on Amazon afterwards. I am a new true Jay-Z fan now.

p.s. I saw a friend in the audience a few times, she was rockin hard. Wish I lived in the NY. Young old, everybody got down at once.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars GOTTA CHECK THIS OUT! February 24, 2005
THIS WAS A TOP MOVIE FOR ME IN 2004 CUZ I LOVE DA JIGGA MAN! I Had Seen This Movie Before Going To an Actual Jay-Z Concert In Anaheim 2 weeks later. And If U see This Movie,u feel the same energy u do if u were to go watch him live. YOu Just Wanna Throw Your Diamonds Up <>! This Movie Is Going To Be Collectible for any hip-hop fan cause jay-z is a legendary artist that has a legacy in music and respect all over the world! I DEFINETELY RECCOMEND THIS MOVIE!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars HOVA, HOVA, HOVA, HOVA, HOVA, HOVA, HOVA, HOVA!!! April 30, 2005
WHOA, I've never been so blown away. This concert made me wantto be there my damn self. Jay-Z delivers as always, because that's Jay everyday, he'll never change. I ,actually, love the fact that he not only gave these people himself and his one in a million talent, he gave them Mary J. Blige, R. Kelly, Beyonce, the Roc-A-Fella family, and more. He gave them a show. He performed ALL the classics and then some. When you first flip it on pay attention at how he describes luck...kind of neat, huh. When I went to Best Buy, it was sold out, and I live in Atlanta. Jay-Z doesn't get too much play, except "Dirt Your Shoulders Off", and that says something. Anyway, Jay REALLY went out in style.

Now I HAVE to address the "Martee" person. First of all never, ever put down anyone's culture, because that shows how much of an educated person YOU are. I must ask if you even watched the DVD. You obviously haven't, because if you did you see that what Jay does is an art, and he mastered it. Did you know that Jay-Z does not write down his lyrics at all, it is all in his head. He never forgot anyone of them. That is nothing short of brilliant. Oh, Oh I've got to address this quote, "Hey kids dont get an education, dont be responsible dont have any class and you too can be a rap or pop star" OMG, this goes on my "MOST IG-NANT QUOTES I'VE HEARD ALL DAY" Yeah I said Ig-nant, because that was 1,000 times worse then being ignorant. YEAH I'm bashing your review because, your review wasn't a review. It was just hate mail for Jay, you actually have to see the DVD to review. I will have you know I am not a "laughable moron". I'm a Honor Student at a Georgia School of Excellence. And What!?!

(Wow, I didn't know I wrote that much on him/her, that guy really pissed me off)
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT July 17, 2005
This is one of the best hip-hop documentaries I've ever seen (only second to 2Pac's Oscar-nominated documentary). Jay Z is truly talented (contrary to what some believe). After seeing this, I wanted to watch it again. My only (and very small) problem was the fact that they failed to capture the making of "My 1st Song." Clark Kent's production on that song is unbelievable; it would have been interesting to see that go down in the studio. But that aside, I am overall very satisfied and urge others (with an open mind/ear) to purchase this marvelous piece of work...

NOTE: Watch this in Surround Sound - you will get the full effect of the concert. Otherwise, the Musicians will sound, as suchalady on the reviews put it, like they were screaming like someone was trying to kill them.-m
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
He's cool and smart
Published 6 days ago by Farzam Rahimi
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
This is my all time favorite movie because i love jay z so much. It was like brand new
Published 7 days ago by Erika J.
5.0 out of 5 stars my fav concert dvd
it had me hype the whole time now I got it for my friend for her bday she'll get one day
Published 5 months ago by Shanequa Cofield
5.0 out of 5 stars Great concert!
Always a crowd favorite. I have loved Jay Z since he first came out and to see the cast of people that come out to perform with Jay makes the concert even better! Read more
Published 7 months ago by yoh
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must See!!!!
This DVD is hard to find in stores. If you have not seen this you need to buy RIGHT NOW and watch it.
Published 11 months ago by Guillermo Torres
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic
classic movie that you will watch over and over again. Obviously it is strange because we now know that HOV had no intention of quitting what so ever, and this was a power move so... Read more
Published 12 months ago by Anthony
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank You!
I bought this item as a gift and had it shipped directly to the recipients's house. It arrived before the specified amount of time and I was pleased. Read more
Published 18 months ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Need a blu ray version
Love this wish it was on blu ray
Lost the first one, this is my second copy
Studio to stage
Published on November 28, 2011 by vinson johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars LOVE IT
I brought this for my mom on mothers day and she loves it!!!she watches it once a month & now she has my son getting excited about the dvd itself!
Published on November 16, 2011 by Latoya
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must Have
This is a MUST HAVE for any Jay-Z fan. It features all of his hits and the guest appearances by other artists just sweetens the performances. Read more
Published on January 18, 2011 by SkyRoamer1
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