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« The Timeliness and Timelessness of "Landline" | Main | Adieu Chérie: Danielle Darrieux »
Thursday
Oct192017

"I, Tonya" I, Teaser

Chris here. 2017 is a banner year for divisive movies, and prepare yourself for I, Tonya to be added to the heap. It was greeted with mostly warm response when it debuted at TIFF, eventually being runner-up for the People's Choice prize. While Nathaniel is one of the film's growing number of detractors, I find myself somewhere on the middle on its wild tonal shifts and competing, disparate narrative points of view.

The film opens in just over a month and there's finally this (very brief) teaser to go along with a few scant production photos. Aside from one of its wittier shots at the onset, this first enticement for audiences relies mostly on its truly ghastly figure skating sequences - trust me, there's even worse CGI to be seen. In many ways the film is a rumination on tackiness but even if there's something honest in the film's garishness, this is maybe not the best way to announce a coming film fast-tracked for awards season release.

And its awards prospects will be a question mark on the season, but it did rack up some Gotham noms. Can Margot Robbie compete with a very wide Best Actress field? She crushes the third act, but the film oddly ignores her for long stretches. How far can newbie distributor Neon take this? It's a crowdpleaser, but its flippancy with domestic abuse will be a major talking point. One thing you can count on: a genius and cruel Allison Janney in Best Supporting Actress for a performance that nails all sides of the films many tones.

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Reader Comments (23)

It. Just. Looks. Awful.

October 19, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterBillyBob

I want to see this. Plus, I think Tonya Harding got a bad rap. I saw a 30 for 30 doc for her and I believed everything she said as I don't think she had anything to do with the whole Nancy Kerrigan thing.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterthevoid99

I'm totally in for this.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

Bad BAD

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterbrookesboy

I don't see why everyone said Margot Robbie locked for Oscar Nom. From that teaser, instead saw Robbie became Tonya Harding, i just see Robbie with Nicolel Kidman Lion- wig with exaggerated expression CGI-ed to professional skater face.

Only one worthy nom is always great Allison Jenney who overdue for Oscar nomination. I heard from reviews her role is reenactment of J.K Simmons in Whiplash.

This year most thirsty campaign award certainly will go to Robbie though.. Other nominees rather quiet ( maybe since Oscar campaign started from Dec )

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterAmazingAmy

That CGI is a dealbreaker for me, it totally took me out of that trailer.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterLC

Robbie's team will have to put her out there for the Academy to nominate her and with Janney the apparent frontrunner in Support I don't think it's unlikely at all,Judging from the reactions it's not To Die For the Twitter generation.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered Commentermarkgordonuk

What is this thing with making Margot Robbie a great actress. She's been decent at best in everything I've seen her in and yet everyone keeps talking about her like she's some eventual oscar winner when I've seen literally nothing in her performances that would even so much as hint at that. She certainly isn't very good here.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterPeter

I was a big figure skating fan in the '90s and am annoyed at how they "prettified" Tonya for this movie. Tonya would never have worn the traditional skating dresses in the trailer (her costumes always stood out from the crowd in one sense or another), and she was wearing big '80s bangs even at the time of the 1994 attack.

Also, what is up with that wacky accent? I'm not sure what type of accent it is supposed to be, but Harding was from Portland and maybe spoke with a bit of a flat affect, but she didn't sound like that.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterSuzanne

I'm both looking forward to this and dreading it at the same time. I'm a huge skating fan, and skating sequences in films never look quite right to me. Robbie's accent doesn't sound right, but maybe it's better in context? I don't know, there's just something about the trailer that seems off-putting.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterArabella

I don't know why but I immediately think of "DROP DEAD GORGEOUS" when I see this preview.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDAVID

Suzanne: If I were to guess why she sounds like that? It's to make her sound more like the archetype of an abrasive, drooling Trump supporter. I have no problem with that. After all, this did start shooting right after the inauguration. So, using a biographical picture as a coded exploration of a major problem? That's an actual reason to make a movie, even if you don't win awards. The bigger problem is how on the nose some of this dialogue is about it. ("There's no such thing as truth, I mean it's bull****." Sigh. Who wrote this? The writer's name is...Steven Rogers? Okay, he wrote other things before (none good), but this coded anti-Trump movie is written by someone who shares Captain America's real name. That is an AWESOME coincidence.) Not that I'm saying this looks good, but there's probably a vision here that isn't aiming at the Academy's collective lizard brain with nothing backing it up.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

I actually wouldn't be at all surprised to see her slide in to the nominations as a surprise when we really should've expected it. Accent. Famous person. Anti-hero. Popular off screen. Beautiful. etc etc.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterGlenn Dunks

Glenn: First time nominee, and a Lead Actress field without one is rare.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Volvagia - Are you high? I've read your post 3 times, and I do not understand it.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered Commenterbeyaccount

Glenn - Globes Comedy will certainly factor in, and same goes for the film itself

October 20, 2017 | Registered CommenterChris Feil

@DAVID: Drop Dead Gorgeous came immediately to mind as soon as I saw this. But if Robbie is trying to do Minnesota ("the sin cities") by way of Portland, Oregon, it sounds like a bad idea. (Besides, Amy Adams already perfected this character/archetype, so...why bother?)

P.S. I love, LOVE, love Allison (Loretta!) Janney in Drop Dead Gorgeous, so am fully prepared to love her again in this film. That's the saving grace here.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

I don’t know what everyone is in a huff about. This was a perfect tease. Letting people know its a comedy, with Margot Robbie playing someone kinda trashy while in the graceful sport of figure skating.


Exactly what a teaser was supppsed to do.

October 20, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterHuh

I do want to see this because of the subject matter. From the trailer, that accent is somewhat puzzling. Although I want Robbie to success in a 'Monster' type transformation, I'm weary of the 'Black Swan' exclamations of 'I did all the skating/triple-axles by myself' over-statements...

October 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterTOM

Huh: I see a probably BAD comedy tied to an admirable undercurrent that's presenting itself a little too blatantly.

October 21, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Everybody's claiming Margot Robbie is a strong contender for a "never nominated" seat... Am I the only one not buying this theory? I'm crossing my fingers for Florence Pugh in "Lady Macbeth" to get that spot and praying for not having Robbie nominated

October 22, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterEd

I'm late to this but, I am absolutely astonished that anyone would consider Robbie a serious actress let alone a serious Oscar contender!-she's the very definition of mediocre in every film she has appeared in. My guess is is that Neon is spending through the roof to market this woman...they might also have many millions more in investors helping out.

The emperor has no clothes, folks and sooner or later people, the right people in the industry, will catch on to this mediocre "actress", film.

November 4, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterDaisy B.

Actually, the costume that Robbie wears in the trailer is very, very close to the one that Harding wore in the 1991 U.S. Championships...

November 17, 2017 | Unregistered CommenterGina

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