Judy Blume Forever is a 2023 documentary film centered on the author Judy Blume, directed by Davina Pardo and Leah Wolchok. The film covers the life, career, and legacy of Judy Blume, including her experiences with some of her books being banned and the current condition of free speech in the United States. It covers her life from her upbringing in New Jersey to suburban housewife to novelist. It includes new interviews with Blume, as well as talk show appearances, photographs, as well testaments from celebrities and the impact Blume has had in their lives.
Blume leads her audience with a gentle tone of narration. recalling stories both funny and sad, memories of happiness, and reading parts of her books with warmhearted zeal that brings the characters and the scenes to life-often with visual animations, as well as live footage from the past, like old ads of the time, and newsreels to take viewers on rides to various times in Blume’s life, which is then shown by using a montage of family photos and home movies. Sitting before the camera, Blume is a powerful storyteller. She isn’t afraid to tell about the more painful momets in her life, like the sudden death of her father, early marital issues, just as much as she is excited to talk about the development of some of her books.
Blume’s presence is the most important one, but many intuitive friends, family members, and fans join her. Childhood friends remember some of the schoolyard horseplay and conversations they shared with Blume, that later inspired some of her books. The film also includes interviews from her children, Randy and Lawrence, and her husband, Goerge Cooper, for a peak at the author’s life beyond writing. Celebrity fans like Jacqueline Woodson and Alex Gino, axtresses Molly Rongwald, and Lena Dunham, and comedian Samantha Bee. add more praise and appreciation for her work. Finnaly we hear letters written to Blume from children struggling with issues who found comfort in her books. Blume is impactful in their lives as she spends unknown hours looking after her readers of all ages.
With over 80 million copies sold and 25 titles, there is lots of Jufy Blume stories to tell. In this documentary, Pardo and Wolchok conceive a heartwarming admiration of an American literary hero, that brings up memories of nestalgia, talks about how powerful the written word is, and tells of the inspiration behind notable lines, and reminds us of her fight against literary censorship still is especially in her home state of Florida and is on a mission to ban children not just from reading her books, but also those of LGBTQ authors and writers of color.
This documentary is a proper tribute to the life of writer catering to generations of readers still growing up and finding their voices. There is humor, tragedy, inspiration, appreciation, and controversial topics throughout Judy Blume Forever. All of it makes for a well put together documentary, that is steaming on Amazon Prime Video just in time for the theatrical release of the film version of Blume’s “Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret.” Even though she’s retired (since 2015), she is still one of the most influential and best selling writers of all time and people today are still finding her books and enjoying just like when they first published. She wasn’t afraid to tackle controversial subjects when her books were published, and isn’t afraid to tackle them today. This film shows the gentle and tough sides of Judy Blume in interesting and entertaining way, that make you want to reread, or if you haven’t read any yet, her books. Today, though she may be a bookshop owner, she a true American icon. 13+ 5/5