TINA (2021)

TINA (2021)

A stirring tribute to Tina Turner's music and inner strength in the face of trauma

7.5

Movie

United Kingdom, United States of America
English
Documentary, Music
2021
DANIEL LINDSAY, T. J. MARTIN
Angela Bassett, Erwin Bach, Katori Hall
118 min

TLDR

This is a predictable thing to say, but she really was simply the best.

What it's about

A documentary following the beginnings of Tina Turner's career, her liberation from her abusive marriage, and her battles with trauma late into her life.

The take

A music documentary with its star as one of its main talking heads runs the risk of coming off like cheap PR, but Tina Turner's own articulate insights never restrict this retrospective on her life. If anything, she assists directors Dan Lindsay and TJ Martin in expanding the film's scope to cover the origins of rock music and the struggles of so many women in the public eye who only ever seem to be defined according to their abusers. Even if Tina is still ultimately a conventional doc that relies on interviews and archival footage, it has a strong emotional core that gives the film a relatively unique psychological edge.

What stands out

It says a lot about the film and about Tina Turner herself that if you're only here to enjoy her music, you still get treated to plenty of that. And if all this talk about abuse and trauma seems like it might get in the way of the songs, it really doesn't. In fact, the impact of seeing Tina sing her heart out so freely and so happily even in her later years is only enhanced by the knowledge of how much she went through—and how much the media constantly forced her to re-confront her abuse out in the open.

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