The year of Queen B

Beyonce doc provides 'irreplaceable' entertainment, insight


Life Is But a Dream, a new HBO documentary exploring the journey of Beyoncé Knowles-Carter as an artist, wife and mother, is a rousing and inspiring success story sure to appeal to both die-hard fans and new converts.

Throughout the film, Knowles-Carter candidly discusses both her struggles and triumphs — professionally and personally. “I want my fans to forget their troubles about breakups, money and just enjoy my music,” she said in the film, proving she was born for this career time and time again.

Contrasting with Beyoncé’s most recent press coverage, which tends to focus on her artistry and her musical chops, much of Life Is But a Dream focuses on Beyoncé’s family life. One of the highlights of the 90-minute documentary is a segment where Beyoncé discusses removing herself from her father’s professional management. Wanting to strengthen her personal relationship with her father, she made the wrenching decision to cut business ties with him. Although the decision was a struggle for the two, Knowles-Carter was able to restore their relationship with time. Outside familial ties, Beyoncé’s life seems to have been filled with similar trials and tribulations. In one of the documentary’s most emotionally moving segments, the pop star addresses the miscarriage she suffered two years ago and how painful the experience was at the time. “Hearing that heartbeat was the most beautiful music I had ever heard,” she said. While this heartbeat died away all too soon, Beyonce bounced back, and the birth of Blue Ivy marked one of the many recent triumphs in the singer’s titanic career.

Certain scenes showcase Beyoncé’s professional and personal support systems, but the majority of the documentary aims to establish the singer as a flesh-and-blood human being. She cries, hurts and fears, just like everyone else — her life is not picture-perfect, but she loves her career and family. If her Super Bowl halftime performance left any doubts, this documentary answers them: 2013 is turning out to be the year of Beyoncé.

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