Film Review – This Is Me…Now

This Is Me...Now

This Is Me...Now

J-Lo just loves love, y’all.

If there’s one thing about Jennifer Lopez’s This Is Me…Now (2024), it’s that she wears her heart completely on her sleeve. Coinciding with her latest album of the same name, this “film” plays like a collage of music videos with a loose story stringing them all together. This isn’t the first time an artist has gone on such a venture – we’ve seen this kind of production from Michael Jackson’s Moonwalker (1988) to Beyoncé’s Black Is King (2020). But what separates Lopez’s work from the others is how earnestly she puts the spotlight on herself. This is about her, through and through. The result is a wacky, indulgent, and entertaining look at a person who simply wants to believe in the magic of romance.

Teaming up with veteran music video director Dave Meyers, Lopez (who shares screenwriting credits with Meyers and Matt Walton) puts her stamp on every minute detail. This makes sense, given that she acts as an executive producer and sunk millions of her own money into the project. She obviously takes a big risk here, and we see it on screen. This is an ambitious and flamboyant undertaking. It’s as though Lopez took every idea and feeling bubbling inside of her and tossed it all into the same pot. We get shades of sci-fi, action, and romance genres, and some not so subtle references to classic Hollywood movies. The cinematography (Scott Cunningham) flips and turns in all sorts of angles, dancing along with the music. The editing (Louis PalaciosAdam Pertofsky) splices the images together with hyperkinetic pacing, bouncing back and forth between scenes with reckless abandon.


There are a lot of visual fireworks for a relatively straightforward love story. Essentially, Lopez – playing a character named “Artist” – goes on an interpersonal journey to find the reasons why she has been so unlucky in love. Her mission is to find her “Happily Ever After,” if such a thing exists. We get bombarded with several fantasy sequences that all represent her thoughts on love and heartbreak. Each scene is backed by a song, with the metaphors as heavy handed as you can expect. A steam-punk inspired number, which features the Artist trying to revive a giant mechanical heart, clearly shows how difficult it is to maintain romantic passion. In another scene, the Artist goes through an entire wedding ceremony, with the editing inserting three different grooms next to her – signifying her trouble in finding a partner. The darkest moment takes place inside of a glass house, where the Artist tries to escape an abusive boyfriend, showing how jealousy and resentment can lead to toxic relationships.

What does this all mean? What exactly is Lopez trying to get at? Is it simply that she wants us to look inside her heart and witness the struggles she’s had to endure? One of the overarching storylines has Lopez visiting a therapist (Fat Joe – an inspired casting choice). Is she saying that she’s been through such an emotional wringer that This Is Me acts as a form of catharsis? I don’t know if there is an answer to any of these questions because the film leaves them ambiguous. Since Lopez opened herself in such a way, revealing all her vulnerabilities for the world to see, we start looking for clues and connections between what happens on screen and her real life. Do any of the dream sequences link back to her time with P. DiddyMarc Anthony, or Alex Rodriguez? When the Artist visits a support group led by Paul Raci (like AAA for hopeless romantics), what help is she looking for? I think it’s safe to say that much of this is directly related to her and Ben Affleck, since Affleck makes an appearance (in a way that you will never, ever expect). 

All these questions ran through my mind the further along things went. After a while, I let go of trying to make sense of the chaos and simply let the experience wash over me. Maybe that is the point. Love can be beautiful and sweet, but it can also be messy and complicated. Perhaps that is why this feels so loose and disjointed, but in a good way. I admired how big of a swing Lopez and Company took, going for big and brash emotionality. There are instances that feel inspired. The wedding scene is lively and energetic. In terms of music and dance choreography it might be my favorite number. Other times, the narrative dives into cheese and schmaltz, such as when the Artist goes back to NYC and has a run in with the younger version of herself. But despite the ups and downs, it’s the drive that makes this such a fascinating experiment. Jennifer Lopez could have easily done another paint-by-number romantic comedy. Instead, she produced something that is wildly imaginative and unique. I’d much rather see someone take a chance and miss than settle for the mundane.


For those that see this, I’m willing to bet the majority will say the most memorable scenes will involve “The Zodiacal Council.” That’s right, we get a group of celebrities all representing one of the Zodiac Signs. Just look at this list:  Jane FondaTrevor Noah, Kim PetrasPost MaloneKeke PalmerSofia VergaraJenifer LewisNeil deGrasse TysonJay Shetty, and Sadhguru. What was the casting department thinking when they brought these people together? The Zodiacal Council operate as a kind of celestial Chorus, watching the Artist from high in the sky and commenting on her adventures. One could assume they represent a version of destiny or fate. I’d rather consider them comic relief. They bring out the biggest laughs if only because they’re such a cluster of different personalities. They’re all dressed as if they were attending the fanciest toga party, and yet they all move and act like themselves. It’s such a bizarre and arbitrary gathering that it approaches a kind of surreal brilliance. 

Is This Is Me…Now a vanity project? Yes, it is. Does it really show its star in full, raw honesty? I doubt it. For someone who’s been in the business as long as Jennifer Lopez, I’m sure she’s keenly aware of her image and wouldn’t besmirch it in the slightest. But I was won over by how goofy and sincere this was. It’s not everyone’s cup of tea, but its “Go For Broke” attitude makes up for a lot of the shortcomings. It’s a fun watch, even if the emotions and themes exist on a surface level. If J-Lo wants to dance in the rain like Gene Kelly, who are we to stop her? 




Allen is a moviegoer based out of Seattle, Washington. His hobbies include dancing, playing the guitar, and, of course, watching movies.

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