Calling Beyoncé an icon seems like an understatement after watching “Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé.”
The nearly three-hour film, which took the top spot at the box office its opening weekend, lays out the story behind Bey’s latest album dedicated to freedom of expression, ballroom culture and Black queer liberation. It takes the formula she used for “Homecoming” and cranks it up a few notches with an even more intimate look at the process, trials and roadblocks she faced on the road to her latest era.
In between scenes of her performing in several cities during her record-breaking tour, Beyoncé reminds us of just how human she is. We see her as a nurturing but concerned mother, a devoted and loving daughter, a 42-year-old woman leaning into a new decade, and, maybe most important, a lover of fried chicken.
What caught me off-guard, however, was something that happened when she put her boss hat on. It’s no secret that Beyoncé is going to get what she needs to achieve her vision. (Blue Ivy’s trajectory in this film is a perfect example that the apple doesn’t fall far.)
“I feel like being a Black woman, the way people communicate with me is different,” she says at one point in the film. “Everything is a fight.” She mentions that people try to “bullshit” her until she gives up.
“Eventually, they realize, ‘This bitch will not give up.’”
It then cuts to a scene in which she’s asking a crew member, a man, if they could change the lens on the camera to a wider fisheye. He tells her that the fisheye he’s using is the widest they make. She gives him the opportunity to try again and asks, “They don’t make them any wider?” He finally says there might be a wider one he can look at.
Immediately after, she’s meeting with another crew member, also a man, who tells her that a camera track long enough for what they need doesn’t exist. Bey, boss-ass bitch, replies that she looked up longer camera tracks and they do exist.
It will never cease to amaze me how much men can try to undermine and underestimate women in power. Beyoncé is a woman with more than 30 years in the game, yet this particular man had the audacity to talk to her like she needed to stay in her lane. He quickly found out that the entire tour is her lane.
Bey also briefly spoke about sexism she’s faced in the music industry, but didn’t go into detail. It shouldn’t be a surprise that she still comes up against it, but it is depressing, nonetheless. No amount of money, respect, accolades or work ethic can solve that.
In this week’s episode of “I Know That’s Right,” I break down the most impactful moments in “Renaissance: A Film by Beyoncé,” question this beef between Wendy Osefo and Nneka Ihim on “Real Housewives of Potomac,” and dive into the way we talk about Black women celebrities in toxic relationships with BuzzFeed’s senior Black culture editor Morgan Murrell. Listen below:
If you want more interviews, pop culture rundowns and conversations too layered for a social media thread to tackle, subscribe to “I Know That’s Right.” With new episodes dropping each week, this show is sure to keep you entertained, informed and shouting “I know that’s right” every now and then.