A challenging adaptation for the filmmakers, probably better suited for a miniseries. Winfrey is fantastic, but the science gets lost (those unfamiliar w/ HELA cells will come away as confused as Deborah); the sense of Henrietta and her story is minimized; and Deborah and family come across as fully whacked out w/ little explanation. The film does nobody justice. READ THE BOOK. It's so totally worthwhile. 2.5 stars
The personally approach any health professional, especially lab researchers and clinical researchers, should get. Something so broadly used but with so much history to tell should be respected and apreciated. Thank you, HELA.
Unfortunately (but unsurprisingly) centers this incredible story of black women around a white woman's attempt to tell it. However, Oprah's performance is so phenomenal and physical (every step she takes with her cane has such a lived-in nature that she's transformed into Deborah Lacks) that when she takes center stage we're reminded that this is her, and her mother's and undoubtedly many other black peoples', story.
A fascinating story poorly conceived. It's quite muddled and doesn't suit a TV film format. It may have worked better as a TV series. Oprah gives a great performance that's let down by the confusing concept. Disappointing but still an interesting story.