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  • Writer's pictureRob Ervin

Don Reviews "The Eyes of Tammy Faye"

We pride our show on the fact we do not discuss politics or religion, but with a film like “The Eyes of Tammy Faye,” the second (and kind of the first) one really have to be discussed. I will be honest here: I have a bad taste in my mouth when it comes to major televangelists and religion figures because so many of them have been found to be frauds and hypocrites, and if you know your contemporary history, you know that this one deals with one of the biggest couples in Jim and Tammy Faye Bakker.

Directed by Michael Showalter (The Baxter, The Big Sick), Jessica Chastain plays Tammy Faye while Andrew Garfield plays Jim from her childhood in Minnesota through their meeting in Bible College, rise to power forming the PTL Network, and the subsequent fall from the top and is based on the 2000 documentary of the same name.

Garfield does an incredible job as Jim, but Chastain really stuck the landing as Tammy Faye and is the first time this year where I am saying a performance deserves a Best Actress nomination next year. Chastain plays Tammy Faye perfectly in her voice tone, her mannerisms, and she did her own singing when recreating her songs that became her trademark all the way through the final scene. I also have to give it to the number of people who did the makeup here, who handled the aging process perfectly, and it is no small feat to try to remake the real life makeup of Tammy Faye.

At just over two hours, I feel this is about right length but too much time was spent on some pieces of the story but not enough on others. For instance, there is very little time dealing with their divorce and Tammy’s second marriage, her public battle with and work with awareness when it comes to cancer, and even the television show she had later. It felt like I was watching a TV show and someone took the remote and fast forwarded through the last 1/4 of the show. Also be aware that even though this is a film about a ministry, there are many dark subjects that are approached very directly. I will say I did enjoy “The Eyes of Tammy Faye”, but I will recommend it as a Saturday Matinee showing in the Theaters.

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