From 2017 to 2020, there has been an influx of celebrity documentaries. We have Justin Bieber’s YouTube documentary, Justin Bieber: Seasons to Taylor Swift: Miss Americana. With an increasing number of celebrities trying to get their ‘raw’ stories out there, should we take the time to actually watch them?Well..we took a look at three Netflix Original celebrity documentaries, Homecoming: A Film By Beyoncé, Gaga: Five Foot Two and Taylor Swift: Miss Americana, should you watch them, or should you just stick to watching their music videos.
Homecoming: A Film By Beyoncé
Homecoming, a Netflix concert film documenting her iconic 2018 Coachella performance in the wake of her twin’s birth. The movie is part traditional concert film and part documentary. You get insightful moments from Beyoncé’s four month training and rehearsal schedule with hours and hours of alternately mundane and thrilling materials.
It is an immensely personal documentary, with peeks into her complicated pregnancy with Rumi and Sir (let’s not comment on their names). And a small glimpse at her marriage and self-image. If you are hoping for interviews or those Kardashian type interviews where she sits in front of the camera and talks about her feelings, you will get none of that. But instead you get her narration that supplements analog footages.
Homecoming reaffirms that Beyoncé is good at what she does, performing, making music and being a role model for every African American woman in America. But at some points in the documentary, we wanted more. Maybe be we watched one too many episodes of those cringe reality TV shows that we can’t appreciate a good documentary about handwork and passion. Who knows but we were hoping on getting a good look into her life, a real good look. Maybe learn a thing or two about Becky with the nice hair (the woman that Jay Z cheated with) but instead we were merely given a glimpse into her personal life. It felt like Beyoncé opened the door to her personal life, but we were only allowed to stand at the entrance.
If you love a good insightful documentary and love Beyoncé, this would be perfect for you. If you love gossip and just want to know the ins and outs of Beyoncé’s personal life, this is not it. Ultimately, we were able to put aside our shallow selves (no gossips for us) and actually fully enjoyed the entire documentary. There were even times where we could relate with what Beyoncé was going through. Homecoming: A Film By Beyoncé is BRUTALLY APPROVED.
Gaga: Five Foot Two
Gaga: Five Foot Two takes us on a journey into the physical and mental health struggles of Stefani Germanotta (Lady Gaga’s real name). The documentary is a stark contrast of how we know Lady Gaga and follows the creation of her previous album Joanne. If you follow Gaga’s music, you would know that Joanne, is really different to all her albums. No crazy hair, makeup and just music.
After watching the film, we have to say that we have never seen such raw moments of a celebrity before. You know that she told her story well when we can empathise with her. She is really open about her experiences with physical pain, with clips of her going through medical treatment to deal with pain because of a broken hip three years ago. But it was about her openness about her mental health that was eye opening.
Everyone knows Gaga as the pop star with a loud fashion sense, the meat dress. But watching her stripped down and talking to the camera on how she caught between wanting to be left alone and being lonely, just makes you want to give her a big hug. You can’t help but relate and feel for her. Gaga is a five foot two artist that often seem sadly but necessarily alone. Which is different from other documentaries that only shows the happy and successful life of the celebrity. Gaga: Five Foot Two is BRUTALLY APPROVED.
Taylor Swift: Miss Americana
Firstly, we have to confess that we are not really fans of Taylor Swift. So, we went into this documentary with the mindset that we would dislike it but hopes that we would fall in love with it. We truly wanted to fall in love with it. Unfortunately, we did not. Miss Americana is a quickie documentary about the trials and problems faced by Taylor Swift.
Do not get us wrong, as non-fans of Taylor Swift, after the watching documentary we started to admire her undeniable talent. She sings really well, writes and produces music so quickly that we just help but admire her. It even made us want to download her music, we were that impressed. The only problem about the film is that it is just not entertaining. There doesn’t seem to have a high point in the film and it is just really stagnant.
For Taylor Swift fans it would feel like they are watching a rerun. Fans have already seen the making video of her music videos. They have already met her mom’s ‘cancer dog’. Her political beliefs are not really a secret when Taylor Swift is pretty vocal on her social media. While we can only assume that Taylor Swift released this documentary in hopes of humanising herself, we can only say that it just feels like we are watching a celebrity trying to pretend to be ‘normal’. When we all know that she is anything but.
This documentary only serve as an extension of a self-curated story that we have already seen half of. Taylor Swift: Miss Americana is BRUTALLY DISAPPROVED.
After watching all three documentaries, would we keep watching celebrity documentaries, we think that we would. Even though, they are cheesy at times but having these documentaries allow fans to be closer to their favourite celebrities. And some might even act as a reminder to crazy, hardcore, stalker-ish fans that, Hey! celebrities are humans too.
If you have seen any of these Netflix Original documentaries, let us know what you think about them by leaving us a comment below. Or if there are any other shows and movies you would like us to review, you know what to do, leave a comment and who knows we might just review them.
Just in case you missed out on our previous Netflix review article: 365 DNI – The next Fifty Shades of Grey hit or Fifty Shades of Stockholm Syndrome.