Becoming, by Cameron J. Czaja

Full disclaimer: Even though Becoming is about Michelle Obama, who is a well-known political figure, this will NOT be a political review. The reason I say that is because I’ve had people criticize my reviews of other films in the past about political leaders with which they don’t agree. That said, here is my review focusing on the character of the former First Lady rather than her politics.

If there’s one type of filmmaking that I deeply appreciate that has not been done on The Legionnaire, it’s the genre of documentary. Granted, I don’t watch them as much as I should, but I was fortunate enough to watch the newest one from Netflix, which is Becoming. The reason I chose to review this one is because in the state we’re living in at this moment in time, I wanted to spread some positivity and this documentary delivered.

To give you a little background on what Becoming is about, it chronicles Michelle Obama’s book tour, but mostly the behind the scenes portion of it. Along with that, it also covers the former First Lady’s pre-political history, along with her life transitioning to the White House and her life after her husband’s presidency.

If you knew nothing about Michelle Obama and hope Becoming will cover everything you need, then you might be a little bit disappointed as this clocks in at an hour and twenty-nine minutes. That said, it will educate you on some of the basic facts of what makes the former First Lady who she is.

I went into Becoming with an open mind and optimistic to learn something new. I feel like if any documentary can fulfill that goal then it achieved something. I knew right off the bat that this was going to be something special just by showing us how Michelle Obama prepares for each ceremony during her tour. Within the first ten minutes it shows how her and her team start off each morning in prayer, and I thought it couldn’t have started in a better way. From there the film filled me with positivity and good spirits, and the best part about it was that it didn’t feel pandering whatsoever. Some may find it that way, but fortunately I didn’t.

There will be some that will label Becoming as a pro-feminist film or say it’s political propaganda. But if your someone like me who just wants to watch a good clean film about positive figures filled with hope during our grim time, then I couldn’t recommend more. It’s no Won’t You Be My Neighbor, but it’s a close second.

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