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2.8 out of 5 stars
Michael Jackson: Auction
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33 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on November 22, 2010
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I had extremely high expectations with this book more then anything else released this year. I have been collecting tons and tons of MJ items over the past decade, and I have never seen such a terrible book. I will be fair and say that I really loved the cover of the book, but aside from that I was not pleased with the contents inside. I have never seen a professional photographer put those type of low quality proofs in a book at that price. If this book was 10 dollars or less then maybe I could have understood that. In my opinion, this book proved to be another thing using MJ's name to make money off of the drooling fans like myself who are desperate for any type of unreleased and unseen projects that involved the late great Michael Jackson.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2010
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
The Michael Jackson: Auction book was absolutely terrible. As I understood the book to say this was a "secret " pboto shoot in order to get photos for the "Invincible" album. Thank goodness Michael did not use these photos. I also heard somewhere that he himself did not like them, which is why they were kept in a safe, locked away. The only reason these pictures came to light is so Arno Bani can get some sort of compensation for them. But these pictures are absolutely dreadful. I loved Michael, but the truth is the truth. The makeup was done in a overly heavy hand, the lighting was too harsh on some and too dim on others, making it difficult for Michael to pick good pictures. He eventually picked 4 which in turn were never used for "Invincible". Only the very rich and bored will buy these pictures at the auction because they will be considered collectors items because of their scarcity of quantity, not quality.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on November 29, 2010
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
This is a nice item for MJ collectors, of which I am one, and there is nothing negative about it (apart from the severe short haircut, yuk). It is an auction catalog rather than a book, which should be borne in mind by anyone intended to fork out money for it. I am so pleased that INVINCIBLE had different photography however, since I love the dance collage of images of Michael in that - truly iconic. These, by Bani, are curiosities, and 'art' but hardly classic MJ. I wonder at the true story behind their being buried in a vault until this point in time... after Michael has passed? Did he really not like them, as one reviewer has suggested? Or were they considered too 'inaccessible' for the public and average fan to appreciate? Was it the label's choice, or Michael's to not use them? If Michael loved them so much, why didn't he do something else with them? It's interesting that, with all the effort that has gone into taking/creating these photos, many unposed photos of Michael taken by the media or his friends and associates are so much nicer - without all the airbrushing and artistic, painterly effects. I think that says a lot. MJ had some favourite photographers he asked to shoot him for various projects... specially as late as 2007 for L'Uomo Vogue and Ebony (Ebony Special Tribute: Michael Jackson In His Own Words). The results in these instances are fun, stunning and typically MJ. Bani's photos are more what a painter does with a model... dressing him up to be something other than he actually is. But, that's just my opinion, folks. Take it or leave it.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2010
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I rated this book 1 star. It should receive none. What's horrible about this book is the quality of the photographs. I find them unprofessional, repetitive and artisically bankrupt. It's one thing to take creative license and it's another thing to use a beautiful canvas such as Michael Jackson and make him look nothing like himself, stripping his look of the integrity and dignity we've come to love in the thousands of images of him. No wonder he didn't want these photos released and I don't believe he asked that they wait 10 years. That's ridiculous and nonsensical. It's likely this is just a great excuse Bani uses as to why it's been 10 years and photos never seen. He can now afford to lie, 10 years later, because Michael is not with us to set the record straight.

I'd seen several of the photos before I decided to buy the book. I purchased it because I am a collector of particular or rare Michael Jackson books, albums and sheet music and I figured this book would be a collector's item eventhough I was not impressed with the preview of photos I'd seen. I knew that I only somewhat liked the photograph of Michael with the glittery blue dot eye, but I expected that I'd see images in the book not yet leaked and I assumed the text/narrative would be interesting. I am disappointed in every way. I wouldn't give this book away as it would make an embarrassing gift. Don't waste your money, please. Michael deserves so much better than this.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on December 11, 2010
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
Clearly, I see why Michael did not use these photos for the Invinsible album. Ever the creative visionary and groundbreaker, MJ broke all the boundries... yet always knew what was correct and "good".
He saw Bani's work in a magazine and subsequently put his beautiful self under this person's "artistic" control, giving him free reign. Michael was always so supportive of other individuals' creativity.

But as others have stated in their reviews of this book, the results from Michael's admirable trust in this case, were not "good", to say the least.
Page after page of small blurry contact photo thumbnails, repeated in cut-up fragments. Harsh lighting, harsh eye on a beautiful subject.
Contrived, gaudy commentary which takes on a judgmental, dark, gloomy, preditory nature toward Michael. Certainly not a respectful, positive tone to these words.

Yet another profiteer at sweet MJ's expense. Wish I could give this 0 stars.
Love 4 Michael always.
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17 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on November 5, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This books is a treasure for fans and non-fans, revealing a side of Michael Jackson which was unknown.
The photos are bold, fun, touching, surprising. This is the work of an artist, not just a simple photograph.

The contact sheets presented in this book shows a raw Michael Jackson, his fragile and fascinating face not airbrushed. The "nudity" of these photos is a real treat, exposing the grace and flaws of the legend and making more unique and charming than ever.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I received this book with perhaps higher expectations than I should have had. The pictures that were enlarged were beautiful, I thought they were very unique and curiously haunting. But I wasn't impressed with the "artistic" quotes and writings throughout the book. I wasn't impressed with the pages and pages of barely legible negatives and blown up bits and pieces of the cut up original pictures. There was a whole lot of filler and not enough substance. I am keeping the book, however, not for monetary purposes because I don't believe it to be worth the money I spent, but because I am a fan of Michael Jackson and it was interesting to see him in this light. He was and always will be a unique man.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on November 26, 2010
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I do not regret purchasing this item. It's not the type of photos I am use to seeing though, nor my favorite. He has the "angry" model look in most of the photos. So it looked like a shot for GQ or something to that effect. In my opinion none of the photos surpass the iconic photos made by other photographers like Annie Leibovitz. Although the young Arno Bani is talented, it looks like a fashion shoot, with no symbolism or anything revealing the "real" Michael Jackson. Very commercial. I have to admit I like the photos selected in the Invincible Album instead of those in this book. The Invincible photos have movement, and is very Michael Jackson. The photos in the book is very sterile, and well...boring. As I said before, I don't regret buying this book simply because its different. If you want to see a different type of MJ photo, this is the one. Also, to be fair, the book is for those wanting to buy the actual photos by auction...so I guess its not really a "real" photo book. And I would think if you actuallly had the photos, it might look pretty cool on your wall at home. So to each its own.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on November 12, 2010
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Boy,this was the worst MJ book I have bought so far. The book was full of the same repeated photos over and over at different angles. Then the other half of the book were one sentence quotes enlarged so that a sentence took up an entire page. I did not like the photos either, I can't tell if they are just images of MJ or pictures that are really touched up so much that it looks more like a statue. I would send the book back but it isn't worth the trouble.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on January 19, 2011
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I purchased this book because I felt it would be a worthy collector's item. It is. Glad that I followed through. It's not a book that you'll pick up over and over again to read, but it's an acquisition that I feel will increase one's appreciation and possibly its own value, over time.
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