The 2nd film I watched on the flight home was I, Tonya. This is a 2017 film starring Margot Robbie as the titular Tonya Harding. Based on the life of former competitive figure skater Tonya Harding,the film gives viewers a glimpse into Harding’s life leading up to her infamous involvement with the 1994 scandal that left her main competitor Nancy Kerrigan injured.
Craig Gillespie directed this film, which I thought was done very well. The acting in the film is phenomenal. Margot Robbie, Sebastian Stan, and Allison Janney brought these characters to life. Margot Robbie plays Tonya Harding in her adult life, and Allison Janney plays her cruel mother LaVona. Sebastian Stan (who has plays Bucky Barnes in the MCU) plays Jeff Gillooly, Tonya’s ex-husband. Special mention goes out to Paul Walter Hauser who played Tonya’s inept and moronic bodyguard. He was great.
Listen, I’m sure there was some whitewashing of Tonya’s actual story for the purposes of making an entertaining Hollywood underdog story. I’m not saying the real life Tonya was a saint. I did appreciate the viewpoint that this real life person was like many of us. Hard life growing up, struggled through it, attempting to make some measure of success. That’s an interesting story to tell, even if they aren’t perfect. It reminds me that I should think twice before judging someone. The people around us every day, whether it’s our friends, family, or people on the street, are with us in the same struggle.
I, Tonya (2018)