(Is it even appropriate to rate someone’s life? But a 5/5 for having the courage to show the best and the worst with such honesty)
Cast: Selena Gomez, Mandy Teefey (mother), Raquelle Stevens (friend) and many others.
Creator: Alek Keshishian
Streaming On: Apple TV+
Language: English (with subtitles in multiple languages)
Runtime: 95 minutes
Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me Review: What’s It About:
We all know, THE Selena Gomez, who’s been a sensational pop star, songwriter, actor and producer. She’s been working ever since she was 7. The glitz and the glamour along with the controversies surely intrigue us but imagine what a star is going through behind those “spicy” headlines and dreadful questions about the past that they’re continuously struggling to move ahead of? It’s all that this documentary is about and way more!
Selena was diagnosed with Lupus back in 2016. That has triggered crippling anxiety in her life ever since while she continuously tries to learn “how to breathe her own breath.” A kidney transplant, mental breakdown, depression along with the worst ever heartbreak is what she’s been through in the past 6 years. But it is just sad what the outside world sees and focuses on.
Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me Review: What’s Good?:
It is often expected from documentaries and biographies that some “deepest, darkest” secrets will be unveiled that would create a stir across the industry. But there’s no revenge drama, no bad blood here because she chose to portray the bigger picture! It is just a raw attempt to explain the life of a 30-year-old who has been juggling between education, work and relationships ever since the age of 7. That’s a lot to hear, right? Imagine the person who’s lived it!
To begin with, I loved the fact how medical conditions have been discussed in ways that a layman would be able to relate to. For example, a normal person wouldn’t be able to understand what BP range could lead to a heart stroke for a Lupus patient. But a simple mention of it, makes it all the way more engaging.
Director Alek Keshishian (who previously worked on Madonna’s documentary) has done a phenomenal job at taking past instances from Gomez’s journal and bringing them to life. And what’s more beautiful is how he’s kept the shots unfiltered. For instance, there remains a point where Selena is talking about her breakup with Justin Bieber and declares it “the best thing that happened to her.” While the videographer interrupts, she refuses to repeat her statement again and the whole sequence without any cuts or improvisations is shown as it is. Only a magician can understand the beauty of it!
Selena feels she’s here, in this world, to do good and this documentary is a huge contribution to help anyone who has been struggling with mental health. From talking about her breakdowns to dealing with the chaos, it only motivates us to believe in the saying that goes by “this too shall pass”.
The background music (of her previous songs) and the footage from her stage shows are just so apt but also minimal in order to keep the subject in focus. The sensitive and disturbing subject of depression is often triggering to many but it’s handled in an astounding way that will also inspire you to “kill them with kindness.” A huge shoutout to Mandy Teefey and Raquelle Stevens for proving why friends and family are all one needs during times of crisis.
Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me Review: What’s Bad?:
Too bad that we have spent almost 20 seasons, glueing our eyes to the TV looking at the Kardashians talk about their sex tapes, lost diamonds in the swimming pools or boob jobs. What we really always needed was the unfiltered side of the stars to know how empathetic we could be. Most often than not, we forget they are humans too and that’s just sad.
To sum up, there is NOTHING bad about this show apart from the fact that you wish it could go on and on and on rather than concluding in 1 hour and 35 minutes.
Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me Review: Memorable Highlights:
To be able to confess your insecurities in front of the whole wide world takes GUTS. It is only someone as rare as Selena who can face the camera and accept that she feels like a “12 year old boy” because of her tiny breasts and butt. Also, there’s no glorification of the star she is or whitewashing of her image but only an attempt to make the audience see what she IS and is capable of rather than continuously being associated with her past.
I also cannot help but confess that there were tears rolling down my cheeks in the 6th minute and that says so much about a documentary. Being somebody, who’s followed her ever since she was a Disney kid, I thought it would be really difficult to not be biased with this movie. But it has only given me reasons enough to boast why she deserves to be taken more seriously and appreciated.
The title song of the song, My Mind And Me, is the apt conclusion a subject like this could have. The words are relatable AF – raw, unfiltered and full of reality as Selena has tried to keep her documentary.
Selena Gomez: My Mind & Me Review: Last Words:
My Mind & Me remains a beautiful attempt by Selena Gomez to tell the world about all that she’s worth as against all that the world sees her as. As beautifully quoted by her, Selena is over her past and is “hoping people can find peace and grace in that too.” Hopefully, that will change and we’ll begin to appreciate her and all she does with an evolved vision.
Selena is truly the role model the world needs but certainly doesn’t deserve.
For more recommendations, read our Everything Everywhere All At Once Movie Review here.