Margot Robbie truly shines in I, Tonya, a biopic that follows the story of the infamous Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan incident.
An up and coming figure skater named Tonya Harding (Margot Robbie) will do whatever it takes to win all the competitions she enters – even if it means hurting another human being in the process.
I have always been a major fan of Robbie and her past roles, so I was excited to see what she could bring to the table with I, Tonya, and she delivered not only one of the strongest (if not the strongest) performances of the entire year here as Tonya Harding. Additionally, it is without a doubt the best performance of Robbie’s career as of now. You do genuinely feel sympathy for Harding at times in the film, but its in the later scenes with Nancy Kerrigan (Caitlin Carver) where you start to feel less sympathy for her. This is not a flaw in the filmmaking, but rather a strength. You are supposed to feel less sympathy for Harding as the film progresses, and I genuinely did. Once her true nature is fully revealed, almost all the sympathy you had for her before is gone.
Another great performance here is by Allison Janney, who portrays Tonya’s mother LaVona. She should easily snag the award for Best Supporting Actress this coming awards season, as she delivers an excruciatingly vigorous performance.
Furthermore, Sebastian Stan is also great here, who acts as Jeff Gillooly, Harding’s husband. Throughout the entire film, you feel no sympathy for him at all, as he constantly physically and verbally abuses Harding. Stan is fabulous at portraying an extremely horrible husband here.
I, Tonya is additionally a film that has a lot of heart and an extremely interesting story at its core. It was genuinely fascinating to see the journey that Harding went on in her desperate hopes at being a figure skating superstar.
The cinematography is also gorgeous here, shot by Nicolas Karakatsanis. Almost every scene in the film is a bright color, adding to the feeling of hope that is within Harding throughout the film.
I, Tonya is an excellent film that boasts Margot Robbie’s best performance to date, and has a gripping story. When it comes to biopics, this is one of the best in quite some time.
Overall Grade: A+
MPAA Rating: Rated R for pervasive language, violence, and some sexual content/nudity
Cast: Margot Robbie, Sebastian Stan, Allison Janney, Julianne Nicholson
Directed by: Craig Gillespie
Distributed by: Neon, 30West
Running Time: 119 minutes