Based on the unbelievable but true events, I, Tonya is a dark comedic tale of American figure skater, Tonya Harding, and one of the most sensational scandals in sports history.
I miss the good old days of a scandal in the 90s when everyone was glued to their television watching the same thing. The Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan debacle was the stuff of legend. Talented athletes in pink chiffon and bedazzled spandex! Mustachioed, villainous husbands and idiot bodyguards! Teased 80s bangs and crunchy crimped hair! Busted knee caps! This scandal had EVERYTHING. I, Tonya tells Tonya Harding’s side of the story, a side we really didn’t see when it all went down back in the early 90s. While Nancy Kerrigan appears in the film, her role is brief and she barely has any lines. It’s the “untold” story, and it definitely tries to make you sympathize with Tonya. Should you sympathize with Tonya? Great question. I’ll leave that for you to decide.
Margot Robbie as Tonya
Margot Robbie is an incredibly talented actress and she tackles the part of Tonya Harding fearlessly. She even learned to ice skate just for this role! I think what I loved most about her performance is that she’s unapologetically trashy, and kind of an asshole, but still just sympathetic enough to make you root for her.
Sebastian Stan as Jeff
Sebastian stans I am sorry to announce that your man plays Tonya’s abusive, asshole husband who was responsible for the infamous attack on Nancy Kerrigan, and who basically ruined Tonya’s life and career.
Allison Janney as LaVona
OMG Allison Janney as Tonya’s mom is incredible. She won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar for this role, and for good reason. She’s terrible! So mean and evil! And she really committed to the whole look. Anyone who wears a pair of glasses like that for a whole movie deserves an Oscar, tbqh.
Julianne Nicholson as Diane
Recently, while watching HBO’s The Outsider with friends, it was driving me absolutely CRAZY trying to figure out how I knew Julianne. She was so familiar as Jason Bateman’s wife, Glory. Mid-way through the second episode, it hit me like a ton of bricks: she played Jenny on Ally McBeal back when I was obsessed with that show in high school. Here she plays Tonya’s ice-skating coach before she gets big time…then again after her fall from grace. Her early 90s hair and fur coats are absolutely GLORIOUS.
Couch-Sharing Capability: High
Anyone who lived through the 90s will want to revisit this absolutely bonkers true tale. You might’ve followed figure skating enough to remember every salacious detail and want to rehash where you were when it happened. Or maybe you only remember half the details and want an entertaining refresher course on how it all went down. I fall into the former category, and kept bugging my husband by pointing out what was about to happen because I REMEMBERED TONYA’S OUTFITS from when it all went down. “Omg she’s wearing the maroon, she is about to cry to the judges about her skate omg.” or “Ok, turquoise outfit, she’s about to land the triple axel.”
Recommended Level of Inebriation: Viewer’s Choice
Do you need to be tipsy for this? Heck no, this is ~cinema~ y’all. It won an OSCAR, you can watch it with pride and sans cringe. However, if you prefer a nice, robust scotch with your Oscar noms and 90s nostalgia, more power to you.
Use of Your Streaming Subscription: Awards Catch-Up
Yes, this is an Oscar winner, so you can mark it off that list you keep of Movies You Should Probably Watch At Some Point. But it’s not just any Oscar winner. It’s got dark humor, sure, but it’s not a drag. It’s a movie that will entertain you, make you feel nostalgic for the days when Olympians were practically movie stars, give you your Sebastian Stan fix, AND provide you with an endless amount of bananas outfits and hairstyles.