You Don’t Know Jack

At the Movies

HBO’s 2010 biopic, You Don’t Know Jack, tells the story euthanasia advocate and facilitator Jack Kevorkian. While the film might seem like an unlikely to feature the pitch perfect sounds of The Swingle Singers, their interpretation of “Organ Fugue” from Fantasia is pivotal to the close of the film. The screen turns to white, the a cappella comes in, and we transition to the image of Kevorkian riding a bicycle down a sunny, faded road, wearing a powdered wig and period robe as the credits roll. The infusion of a cappella communicates a certain sense of whimsy and quirkiness intrinsic to this telling of the Kevorkian story, as well as subverting the viewer’s expectations, applying the human voice to a lyric-less piece of music.