[CRITIQUE] Arnold: The successful introspection of Schwarzenegger

Arnold is a documentary series that traces the exceptional life of Arnold Schwarzenegger, from his childhood in Austria to his career as an actor and governor, passing through his passion for bodybuilding and his tumultuous private life.

Available from June 7, 2023 on netflix, Arnold is a three-part documentary series that traces the life ofArnold Schwarzenegger, the famous actor and politician. In this documentary, the Austrian oak opens up frankly and looks back at the different stages of his career: Arnold the athlete, Arnold the actor and Arnold the American (politician).

Schwarzenegger is undeniably one of the greatest personalities in this world. For the children of the 80s and 90s, he embodied the hero par excellence. At that time, the fashion for comic book superheroes in the cinema was not yet launched. The heroes of the generation of the 80s and 90s were those of the action films of the Reagan era: Schwarzenegger, Stallone, Willis or Van Damme. Their name was enough to attract crowds in dark rooms. They represented “a paternalistic figure of fiction” for young spectators. As confided Sylvester Stallone in the third and final episode of the documentary, they are dinosaurs today, but they are still there.

From Austria to Hollywood

In the first episode, Arnold Schwarzenegger recounts his childhood in post-war Austria, marked by a difficult family life and a conflicting relationship with an authoritarian father who put him in competition with his brother, Meinhard Schwarzeneggerdied in a car accident.

He explains how he developed his passion for bodybuilding after seeing Reg Park In Hercules in the Haunted World (1961). Arny shares his first experience in competitive fitness and bodybuilding with one goal: to sculpt the perfect body and shape his mind. After having won several victories, he has to face some failures.

At the height of bodybuilding, Schwarzenegger turns to cinema. But his imposing stature and lack of experience are obstacles to breaking into Hollywood. Must wait Hercules in New York (1970) and Conan the Barbarian (1982) to seduce the public and the studios. His career exploded with terminator (1984) by james cameron.

From Terminator to Governor

In the second episode, Arnold reflects on the successes and failures of his acting career, as well as the rivalry with Sylvester Stallone orchestrated by producers. After batman & robin (1997), Schwarzenegger faces health problems. Very quickly, he thinks of a career in a field that has fascinated him since the 80s, politics.

Things rushed during the production of Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003). After the release of the film, the Austrian oak presents himself as a candidate for governor of California. The third episode follows this new turning point in the career of Schwarzenegger, whose two terms influenced politics in the United States.

behind the legend

The documentary is punctuated by the testimonies of several personalities: Sylvester Stallone, Jamie Lee Curtis, Danny DeVito, james cameron or Linda Hamilton. Schwarzenegger also talks about his private life: his first girlfriend, his marriage to Maria Shriverthe president’s niece John Fitzgerald Kennedyand their four children: Katherine Eunice, Christina MariaPatrick Arnold and Christopher Sargent Shriver Schwarzenegger. He also talks about his friends, like Franco Columbus And Ivan Reitman.

He expresses his regrets, in particular his divorce in 2011 with Maria Shriver after revealing to him his affair with Mildred Baena, one of his housekeepers, with whom he had a hidden child, Joseph Baena. Of all his children, Joseph is the one who resembles him the most. Arny admits that watching him grow, he had no doubts about his paternity.

Arnold is an exciting documentary that takes us through the life of a true legend. Through his sincere and uninhibited testimony, Schwarzenegger shows us the different facets of his personality, his successes and his failures, his dreams and his regrets. This is a documentary not to be missed for all fans of the actor or for those interested in his extraordinary journey.

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