(Credit: Eva Rinaldi)

Films

5 best documentaries on Netflix like Jennifer Lopez's 'Halftime'

Directed by Amanda Micheli, Jennifer Lopez recently appeared in the Netflix documentary Halftime which created quite the buzz upon its release on June 14th, 2022.

The documentary film gives an intimate insight into the dazzling career of Jennifer Lopez as an artist while also providing an intimate insight into the evolution of her career, self-doubt, insecurities, imposter syndrome and her contact struggle to inspire and entertain the masses.

A brilliant retelling of Lopez’s life and career, the documentary also focuses on her iconic performance at the Super Bowl halftime show. Celebratory and empowering, the documentary records Lopez’s resilience, tenacity and grit, which will interest fans and others alike.

Before Halftime, Netflix added an eclectic mix of music biopics and documentaries that appeal to music fans, whether they like jazz, classical, R&B, pop or hip hop.

Here are five such documentaries like Jennifer Lopez’s Halftime that you might enjoy:

5 best documentaries on Netflix like Jennifer Lopez’s ‘Halftime’

Miss Americana: Taylor Swift (Lana Wilson, 2020)

Taylor Swift is a massive pop-cultural phenomenon who is known for her beautiful lyricism, bold outspokenness and kind demeanour. Miss Americana is an awe-inspiring and intimate insight into the singer’s life and fruitful career as she tries to find her footing in a highly competitive, male-dominated industry, amidst various obstacles like insecurities, personal demons, family issues, and the lack of privacy and sexual assault.

The documentary also provides a social commentary that portrays the birth of her political sensibility regarding feminism, LGBTQ+ rights and more. It also humanises the star and shows her in the rawest and most vulnerable form.  

Homecoming: A Film By Beyonce (Beyonce, Ed Burke, 2019)

Beyonce is a pop-cultural legend who is often referred to as Queen Bey and has a massive fanbase that revels in her empowering music and gracious stage presence. The first-ever Black woman to have headlined the 2018 Coachella festival, she paid tribute to the historicity of Black culture which is beautifully documented in the film. It not only provides exclusive performance footage but also a closer look into the emotional evolution of a creative idea into a global phenomenon.

The 2018 festival is often referred to as Beychella and sees Beyonce dazzling in her powerful and euphoric avatar as she sends across a political message relevant to the Black community. She also incorporates sayings from Black intellectuals and invites other Black singers to share the stage, thus basking the world in the beauty of their culture. Her performance reclaims the agency for the entire community and is one of the most definitive moments in pop history.

Gaga: Five Foot Two (Chris Moukarbel, 2017)

Lady Gaga is a mysterious and enigmatic provocateur whose life gets an unfiltered portrayal via the lens of this documentary. As she tours with her entourage and prepares for her concerts, trying to put on her best self for her fans, the documentary shows how she is not all about the madness, glitz and glamour but also pretty human as she struggles with chronic illnesses.

While emphasising how difficult it is for pop stars to keep up the facade, the documentary continuously shows a closer look into Gaga’s admirable resilience and dedication. Including various personal insights, it also includes her infamous feud with Madonna besides several other meltdowns that present the raw and vulnerable side of Gaga. As she navigates through various challenges in her path, she finds solace in music which forms the crux of the documentary.

No Direction Home: Bob Dylan (Martin Scorsese, 2005)

Influential and revolutionary, Bob Dylan’s illustrious and trailblazing life and career are cemented by the brilliant vision of veteran auteur Martin Scorsese in this polarising 2005 documentary. It traces Dylan’s legendary ascent from his humble Minnesota roots to his good old days in the Greenwich coffee house, before taking a plunge into his climb to stardom that was laced with obstacles. Raw and sincere, the documentary is a stylized biographical dramatisation of the icon’s life.

With several interviews and conversations, the film features various footage clips that provide intimate insights into the singer’s life. Scorsese’s perceptive portrayal of Dylan’s impregnable and mysterious life is beautiful and elusive. Having derived the title from his single, ‘Like a Rolling Stone’, Scorsese presents a brilliant slice of life story about a defining musical icon in American History.

jeen-Yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy (Coodie, Chike Ozah, 2022)

 Clarence Simmons aka Coodie and Chike Ozah aka Chike, the headhunters of Creative Control, have been longtime collaborators of West, having directed the visuals for some of his music videos. The duo have been recording West for more than two decades now, storing all the footage for his three-part documentary film/series which has been acquired by Netflix for a staggering $30million.

With archive footage and other domestic videos, the series also features interviews and conversations that provide an intimate insight into the life and persona of the iconic rapper, Kanye ‘Ye West, who is known for his unabashed eccentricity. Tracing nearly two decades of his career and subsequent evolution as a human being, it presents an interesting, insightful and nearly haunting portrait of his creative genius.