HomeInterviewsReview: STILL: A Michael J. Fox Story with Comments from Michael J....

Review: STILL: A Michael J. Fox Story with Comments from Michael J. Fox & Davis Guggenheim

Photo Credit: AppleTV

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Going through the press rounds in the recent weeks for his new biopic documentary STILL: A Michael J. Fox with Oscar-winner Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth), Fox said he doesn’t believe he’ll make it to 80. His Parkinson’s is starting to take its toll with each day.

Even if that’s alarming to some, at 63 years young, Fox’s estimate feels grateful. 

Anyone that walks away from seeing STILL will probably see that. Fox is filled with infectious optimism and graciousness.

Seeing Fox on the red carpet at the U.S. premiere at SXSW back in March, moving through his life takes time. But he’s utterly persistent and patient, and least of all patient. It would have been entirely acceptable if he opted to just skip the press line after the Apple+ crew got their interview footage. Yet, he took his time to answer questions down the line with his wife Tracy Pollan who helped him balance the whole time.

Once he came to the gaggle with The Pop Break, Fox talked about the process of telling his life on film. Having already written four memoirs in the past two decades, it was time to get back on camera: Tell it with all the charm that has permanently entrapped him in the ‘80s. He’s still every bit of Marty McFly and Alex P. Keaton.

“It was interesting. Davis was sparked by the books to convert it to visual and he explained how he was going to do that. Sounds great. It was really fun,” Fox said.

He added that it was also really Guggenheim that made this possible, telling the Pop Break that other directors had approached him in the past about a documentary. Considering the background of Guggenheim as a political activist with films that focus on climate change, Barack Obama, and the American education system, the closest Fox seems to be relevant through that lens is his role on Spin City.

But Guggenheim isn’t so sure Fox’s story doesn’t fit his typical humanitarian lens.

“When I made An Inconvenient Truth about climate change, that is directly making an argument about climate change. But emotion is a thing that unlocks people’s hearts,” the Oscar winner said. “The emotion in this movie helps you understand not just Parkinson’s but how to handle life. How to handle adversity. How to handle this really tough time. Yeah, that’s perfectly in line with my other movies.”

He added that as a subject, Fox is everything you imagine him to be. There’s no artifice.

“Hollywood actors are different because people feel like you know them. And so when you make a documentary, you strip that service. And the question is, what’s beneath the surface? With Michael, there’s something really interesting when you pull the curtain. Not every famous person is that the case. Sometimes you pull the curtain, you don’t like what you see!” Guggenheim said.

As seen throughout the course of STILL, Fox is an enigmatic figure. 

For viewers like myself that have mostly seen him through the lens of Back to the Future and Family Ties, it not only does a good job contextualizing just how meteoric his rise was, as well as the ensuing crash upon his diagnosis and alcoholism.

Told largely through a sit-down with Fox and aided by some archival footage and recreated moments of his life, it’s really a good 90 minutes of Fox guiding his story, unflinchingly open about his thoughts, not of what was lost but a great life he has been blessed. 

STLL: A Michael J. Fox Movie is currently streaming on AppleTV+


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