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This Netflix documentary is based on the life of Michelle Obama as told in her autobiography of the same title. When I read the book, I thought it was good but way too long; I kept telling myself that she needed a better editor. But I am glad that I saw the film. It was much more concise yet told the story of how she not only became First Lady of the United States but, through that experience, has found her own voice and power independent of her husband. The film is a montage of guest appearances through which she tells us her story of growing up in a middle-class family in Chicago, getting a law degree and working as an attorney, meeting and marrying Barack, and experiencing 8 years in the White House and raising two daughters. I left the film firmly convinced of how much of a role model she is, particularly for girls and women of color, and how her example and compassion inspire so many others. I have to say I was also a bit nostalgic and wanting the Obamas back in charge of the country, but the film leaves the impression that they will be continuing to be a major influence in the country. Big thumbs up from me! (2020; 4.5 stars).

About Gary Burkholder

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