Directed by Errol Morris
I was but a wee little baby when Joyce McKinney became the queen of the international tabloid cover girls. Depending on which side you choose to believe, McKinney either kidnapped a man she believed to be her fiancé, while he was on a Mormon mission in London, England, and proceeded to rape him several times before he escaped, or she saved her lover from an oppressive cult that was trying to keep the two apart. No matter which side you take, the details that surface while trying to get to the truth in Academy Award winning director, Errol Morris’s latest documentary, TABLOID, are bizarre, fascinating and completely addictive. This is the stuff true tabloid legends are made of.
Morris, the man behind some of the most poignant and insightful war documentaries in film history, is clearly having a lot of fun with himself in TABLOID. McKinney believes she was never really given the chance to tell her full story and Morris gives her free reign to do so here. In fact, most of the film is just talking heads trying to recreate the insanity that ensued from McKinney’s hijinks. McKinney herself is a full on train wreck that always commands attention. It is a constant struggle to figure her out. Is she telling the truth? Or has she just been telling these lies for so long that she actually believes them to be truth? In that regard, she is a victim of the tabloid she herself created in her own head. The world formed their own opinion of McKinney based on what they read in print, while McKinney formed her opinion of herself based on her own warped version of what took place.
TABLOID is an unexpected film experience, one that takes you places you would never expect. It has kinky sex and questionable religious practices; it even has cloning - everything you need for an unforgettable scandal! Subsequently, all that sensationalism also makes for a pretty unforgettable film too.