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  • Gareth Crook

I, Tonya (2017)

Bloody hell if there wasn’t an undercurrent of dark farcical humour to this, you’d cut your wrists inside 20 minutes. I can’t say I knew much about Tonya Harding and I’m gonna take all this with a pinch of salt. What we have here is what I suspect is the general gist of events, but with the drama dialled up... and there’s a lot of drama. Harding is not a quiet character and Margot Robbie plays her with the volume turned all the way up. Poverty, casual domestic violence and an expletive count that scores 10 across the board, it’s pretty gritty or perhaps as Harding suggests during videotape style pieces-to-camera, it’s real. It’s all punctuated with some really lovely stuff on the ice with the camerawork being almost as spectacular as the skating. This film though isn’t about finesse, it’s about the lack of and works as a perfect accompaniment to Harding herself. It’s a raw struggle of pretty stupid people, living in a stupid class system, in a country that appears, at least in part obsessed with competition and hatred. A quite remarkable story, told remarkably.



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