Chris Brown has made headlines for all of the wrong reasons throughout his career. I'm sure just reading this sentence, you can think of at least two.
Welcome to my Life, which is a documentary of the 28-year-old was released on Netflix Canada this past weekend. The synopsis stated that it would be like a VIP experience for his fans, which includes exclusive interviews, behind the scenes of his concerts, and unpublished moments of his career. Finally, Chris Brown gets to speak up about things in his life that he regrets, and it acts more of a confessional for himself.
What we can't argue is that Chris Brown has talent. He has not been compared to Michael Jackson multiple times for nothing. The documentary, which was received super well by his fans in the United States, opens up with a black and white scene of him talking about getting anxiety and sometimes not feeling confident on stage. For the first 22 minutes of the 1 hour and 18 minute documentary, several big names in the music industry praise him. People like Jamie Foxx, Usher, J.Lo, Rita Ora, Mary J. Blige, Tyga, and others all talk about him like he changed the world of music during his adolescence.
After what seems like an hour of praise, Chris Brown then starts talking uncomfortably about the elephant in the room. He starts to tell the story of how he entered the music industry at only 15, and then goes on to talk about how he became the number one public enemy in 2009.
The same person at the beginning of the film who seems super confident, now is super vulnerable and uncomfortable talking about what happened between him and Rihanna that night. This is the first time he has really talked about the incident after the Grammy's since he got in trouble with law.
Chris Brown met Rihanna when he was only 15, and they had been friends for a while before they started dating. He says they were living in a fairytale, and completely naive and happy. Since they were both famous, they couldn't have the relationship they truly wanted. At only 17 and 18, he told her he wanted to marry her, but also wanted to be honest with her. He confessed to Rihanna that he had slept with one of his employees before he had gotten serious with her, and this is when things started to go downhill. Rihanna completely lost confidence in him, and they began to fight often, verbally and physically.
This is when he started to get into detail, almost too much detail, concerning that famous night that led him behind bars. At the Grammy's after party, Rihanna was mad because the girl he had earlier told her about was there. He said he didn't know she was going to be there, and he handed over his phone to her to 'prove' he didn't know. However, there was a text from that same girl saying she would see him at the party, and that's where it all began. In the car, they fought like crazy and she started beating him, kicking him and shouting at him. It was then that he punched her in the face, and split her lip open. She started spitting blood in his face, and then he pulls the car over and she throws the keys out of the window. Rihanna started yelling "Help, he's trying to kill me!" and then started scratching his CDs that had his new music on it. He didn't say how it ended, but the pictures of Rihanna's busted lip and black eye are shown on the screen from when he pushed her against the window. The pictures are really, really hard to look at.
The rest of the documentary is basically about his 'descent into hell', and his justifications for everything that happened to him. He talks about his depression, suicidal thoughts, his family problems, and a history of violence in his family. He then talks about his various altercations and 'psychotic episodes' where he stayed in a detox centre to deal with his violent urges and his breakup with Karrueche Tran. She left him via Twitter after finding out he had a child with another girl.
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After all of this heavy information, Chris Brown and all the artists interviewed are back again to say how much of a gift he has, and that he has done his work to defeat all of the demons in his head. Chris Brown ultimately credits prison for saving his life, because being around criminals all the time changed his perspective on life.
For people who want to know what happened between him and Rihanna, and why he committed all of these violent acts, the documentary isn't bad. It's clear he has done a ton of work to be where he is today, and it's interesting to hear his side of the story finally after only hearing it through journalists since 2009.
Chris Brown now describes himself as a very hands-on father and is focusing on his creativity and music. However, for those who are interested in the life of Chris Brown, this documentary doesn't show much. It's a difficult documentary to watch as there is some discomfort and not a lot of trust when it comes to being his fan.
If you're sensitive when it comes to this kind of topic, I wouldn't watch the documentary. You don't learn much besides his side of the story, and the rest is the music industry praising him, which we can all do just by listening to his music. The documentary gets personal in a couple of ways, but not enough to change your mind if your opinion of him has been the same since 2009.
Original Article: Laurie Bergeron - Narcity