I Knew Almost Nothing About Bob Marley Before Going To See One Love, Here's Why The Biopic Turned Me Into A Fan

Kingsley Ben-Adir in Bob Marley: One Love
(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

So, I got the chance to see Bob Marley: One Love – and I have to say, it turned me into a Bob Marley fan. 

I never really listened to Bob Marley's music, though I always considered myself a music lover. As a kid, I loved Michael Jackson so much, and I'm so excited for the new Michael biopic coming out. I adored Queen, so I was first in line to see Bohemian Rhapsody starring Rami Malek, but Marley was never someone I openly went out to listen to. 

I think that's because I have heard "One Love," arguably one of his biggest songs, for so long, but I didn't look into the artist at a young age. But, the trailer for the film interested me, and then the reviews for Bob Marley: One Love came in, and I was even more intrigued, so I decided to see it. 

And, honestly, it truly made me a fan – and here are my reasons why. 

Kingsley Ben-Adir in Bob Marley: One Love

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

First Off, Kingsley Ben-Adir Was Outstanding As Bob Marley

Let's be honest here and say that to make any amazing biopic successful, the person playing the historical figure must rock it. The rest of the movie could be absolute trash, but as long as the lead actor, as the main character we are following, accurately portrays the person, I am down. 

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We've seen this done well in so many other cases – like in one of Jennifer Lopez's best films, Selena, or Austin Butler, and his everlasting accent, in Elvisbut other times, we've seen it done pretty poorly. I won't name names, but it's happened. 

Actor Kingsley Ben-Adir might be one of the best portrayals of Bob Marley I think there ever could be. Granted, I only knew a little about Marley before heading into this film, but I did my fair amount of research and knew at least enough about the artist that it would take somebody striking gold to portray him accurately. 

Ben-Adir was the best choice. He captures Marley's spirit and kindness but shows his struggles as so raw that I was moved throughout the film. It reminded me of Lopez's performance as Selena, where I sometimes had a hard time separating the real artist from the actor – genuinely outstanding work.

Kingsley Ben-Adir as Bob Marley in Bob Marley: One Love

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

And The Music Made Me Feel Happier And More Peaceful Than Ever

I already mentioned "One Love" here, but I have to say, this film made me want to listen to so much more Bob Marley. 

I was in love with all the music and learned that some songs I had always known about were originally from Marley. "Three Little Birds," for example – I've heard so many covers of that song but never knew he originated it. 

There was even one song – "Is This Love"– that I had heard before, but I 'd never listened to the lyrics. For some reason, I was in the theater with tears streaming down my face, because the song hit some deep part of me. The lyrics, while simple, were so calm and joyful and reminded me of a time when things didn't feel as severe, as intense as they do now – and his music brought up emotions in me that I didn't know were there before. 

Kingsley Ben-Adir in Bob Marley: One Love

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

One Love Taught Me Aspects About Bob Marley That I Never Knew Before

Again, I knew very little about the performer going into Bob Marley: One Love. I only knew a few of his songs, that he hailed from Jamaica, and that he truly changed the music world and sadly passed away at a young age. Aside from that, I knew nothing about this artist. 

By watching the film, I learned a lot more than I ever thought I would. Like about how he strived for peace and was nearly killed in the process. How he was a forgiving man, and tried to spread his message despite being diagnosed with cancer. How even he had his faults. I learned so much. 

It made me wonder how much artists are going through that we don't know about. We can spend hours talking about the friendships of Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez or public jokes between celebrities, but at the end of the day, they could all be going through things that we don't know about – and might not ever know about. 

Lashana Lynch and Kingsley Ben-Adir as Rita and Bob Marley in Bob Marley: One Love

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

And Introduced Me To A Love Story I Never Knew About

Man…the love story of Rita and Bob Marley hit me hard. 

I'm so used to the fakeness of some of the best rom-coms out there that I'm not used to movies that deal with love in such a natural way, but I loved watching the relationship between these two. Again, I didn't know he was married, let alone had children and a whole family. 

What I liked the most about it was that it wasn't a cookie-cutter romance. It was probably one of the most authentic romances I have seen on a movie screen in a long time, where they show their issues, their problems, their struggle to reconnect, and that's something I think people need to see more of – that through all, love really can connect others again. 

Lashana Lynch and Kingsley Ben-Adir in Bob Marley: One Love

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

But Also Inspired Me To Do My Own Research On The Singer

This is a biopic, and I know that certain things are done here and there for dramatic effect. I didn't believe everything that happened in the film because sometimes, there are things that are amplified to make the audience sit in their seats. There will always be misconceptions about the artist's legacy, some of which can make it into a film like this. 

But, I think that's a good thing – even if the historical events aren't a one-to-one recreation of what happened in real life, because it inspired me to do my own research. It made me look up Marley afterward, start listening to his music, and begin to understand the man – and at the end of the day, that's what makes a movie like this successful.

Kingsley Ben-Adir as Bob Marley with his family in Bob Marley: One Love

(Image credit: Paramount Pictures)

Overall, I'd Recommend It To Someone New To The Artist

I also recommend this film to anyone who doesn't know the artist. Heck, I would recommend this to people who do. 

As someone who went into this without knowing anything about him, I truly enjoyed it. It's become one of the best music biopics out there, and this one will be hard to beat out of all the upcoming music biopics

If you're at all interested in Bob Marley: One Love, I would highly suggest checking it out, and considering it's been going strong in theaters, you won't regret the time you spend watching it – and the hours you'll spend listening to Marley's music after. 

Alexandra Ramos
Content Producer

A self-proclaimed nerd and lover of Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire, Alexandra Ramos is a Content Producer at CinemaBlend. She first started off working in December 2020 as a Freelance Writer after graduating from the Pennsylvania State University with a degree in Journalism and a minor in English. She primarily works in features for movies, TV, and sometimes video games. (Please don't debate her on The Last of Us 2, it was amazing!) She is also the main person who runs both our daily newsletter, The CinemaBlend Daily, and our ReelBlend newsletter.