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
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.