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‘I, Tonya’: Dark Portrayal of Unglamorous Celebrity

“I, Tonya” was an incredibly dark portrayal of the reality of Tonya Harding and her short-lived figure-skating career. The film is based on the true story of Tonya Harding and the scandal involving the career-shattering injury of Nancy Kerrigan.

A Raw Truth

“I, Tonya” is rated R for the vulgar language and domestic violence that make up a large portion of the film. While some may deem the amount of F- bombs and other obscenities to be excessive, the language is essential to the truest portrayal of Harding. The film made every effort to show the raw reality of what Harding’s life looked like before, during and after the incident that ended her entire career as a olympic figure skater. While the movie was hard to watch because of how vivid the reenactment of Harding’s life was, it made for an excellent film that left nothing untold.

A Stupendous Soundtrack

Every great movie needs a great soundtrack to tie it all together, and “I, Tonya” did not disappoint. The film was very dark in nature, but its soundtrack was used just perfectly to ease a bit of the weight while simultaneously creating a way for viewers to understand the emotion of what was occurring. The music was very retro, which drew the viewers into the movie and made them feel like they were back in the 80s, with Harding as she experienced all the brutal things that led to the end of her career.  Most of the soundtrack is ironically upbeat despite the plot of the film being very dark, but the contrast somehow works beautifully to enhance the quality of the movie.

A Broken Fourth Wall

“I, Tonya” is distinguishable for many reasons, but the breaking of the fourth wall is a distinct aspect of the film. A large portion of the film is in an interview format, which is an attribute of the film’s depiction of Harding’s reality. The interview format allows viewers to see into the minds of everyone involved in the Nancy Kerrigan incident that ended Harding’s career. There arealso several moments during the film when Harding looks directly into the camera and speaks as if she is aware the audience is there. These moments are especially impactful because they occur while the event that Harding went through is being shown on screen.

Overall, I would give “I, Tonya” eight stars out of 10. It would be inappropriate to say the film was enjoyable because it depicted such raw and uncomfortable events, but I will say that the film is more than worthy of being seen.

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