To become famous in your sport, you can be the best, or you can cause controversy: Tonya Harding did both. And now Craig Gillespie’s I, Tonya tells her story.
Margot Robbie stars as the US figure skater, taking us through her career, right up to the infamous, ill-conceived attack on her competitor, Nancy Kerrigan, that defined her legacy.
Harding herself proclaims she is a ‘redneck’, and it’s obvious that the figure skating world does not think she belongs.
She is told that the judges want a wholesome, American icon from a stable and loving family, but that couldn’t be further from who Tonya was and where she was from.
Her mother, Lavorna (Allison Janney), inflicts abuse upon her without an ounce of remorse. Her first marriage with Jeff Gilooly (Sebastian Stan) also turns abusive.
The script adopts a darkly comedic tone and there are comparisons to be made with the Coen-brothers.
In the third-act there is a striking emotional-shift into more dramatic territory that allows Robbie to truly shine in her role.
Words: Tom Boddy