Biopics without artistry should be documentaries


Maleaha Brings Plenty , Opinions Columnist

Biopics are an interesting form of entertainment. Taking the events from people’s lives and turning them into movies is a unique way of informing the public about who the people were and how they lived.

Rather than an informative documentary, biopics tend to focus on the drama and the artistry of the film rather than the accuracy of the events and information presented. Bohemian Rhapsody, for example, was an artistically impressive movie but a rather inaccurate retelling of Freddie Mercury’s life.

When looking at biopics, it’s hard to tell when to say it’s a “good” versus a “bad” biopic. Are we looking at the artistry and creativity of the movie, or are we focused on the accuracy of it? Or maybe a strange blend of the two? My answer to that question is that we should have both.

Biopics are different from documentaries. Documentaries are purely educational and informative and they’re not primarily focused on the aspect of art. Rather, they’re focused on the accuracy of the information presented. This is why I believe people shouldn’t look to biopics for entirely accurate information, because that’s the purpose that documentaries serve.

Biopics are meant to be an artistic retelling, meaning there might be some drama added to the storyline to make it more compelling and interesting. There is a line where creative liberty turns into blatant inaccuracy and lying, but one should turn to documentaries if looking for completely factual information.

Too much creative liberty with biopics could result in spreading lies about subject in real life. It might present either a romanticized or completely inaccurate version of who the subject was.

“Good” biopics should be considered those that blend artistry and historical accuracy. Too much creativity can result in blatant and sometimes distasteful inaccuracy, but too much accuracy can make the film too much like a documentary.

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