Madonna continues to revel in pushing boundaries and remaining original, and she promises to live to 200 in her wide-ranging new concert documentary. Madame X is a two-hour smorgasbord of theatrical performances, complex choreography involving nearly 50 performers, flashing mixed media, and elaborate set designs.
A 90-second video intro on her career as a provocateur undersells the cosmopolitan and inclusive concert she goes on to give, incorporating a breadth of world musical genres, styles, and artists and a plethora of political messages and imagery.
The artist mixes her classics with newer pieces made with artists from around the world. She sings in Portuguese in a makeshift "Fado Club," a nod to the concert location and Madonna's time living in Lisbon. She is accompanied on video by Colombian artist Maluma in a sexy dance number. An all-female orchestra from Cape Verde and another female group accompany her on two of the most memorable pieces, inspired by African and Middle Eastern sounds.
You might want to take the two hours in doses, which is easy to do with a pause between numbers. Donning knee (and, it would appear, butt) pads, Madonna herself seems to need a pause between some numbers. She also does a handstand and dances in high heels.
The icon works very hard to still be sexy in her 60s, and prides herself on her continued nonconformity, but she also comes across as quite maternal in this concert, connecting with women of all backgrounds, incorporating her adopted kids into the act, and beaming with pride as she showcases young talents from around the world.
It's neat to see her interacting with the audience in a relatively small venue, where she walks onto the floor and takes a seat on a couple of occasions.
It would appear, from minor outfit variations, that there's more than one performance edited into this film. But there's only one Madame X, eye patch and all.
Read the full review at Common Sense Media.