“My Mind & Me” is a new documentary that recounts six years of Selena Gomez’s life and breaks the conventions of the genre. The documentary portrays sincere, raw footage of her battles with lupus, mental health and stardom, which Gomez has dealt with while being one of Hollywood’s most beloved celebrities. “My Mind & Me” released on Nov. 3 on Apple TV+ and has sent viewers running for their tissues.
Directed by Alek Keshishian and performed and written by Gomez along with Amy Allen, Jon Bellion, Jordan Johnson, Stefan Johnson and Michael Pollack, the documentary reveals the common theme of mental health awareness, an important topic for Gomez. A “My Mind & Me” trailer released on Oct. 10, which is also World Mental Health Day.
At the beginning of the film, we immediately see Gomez’s vulnerability to her mental health. A scene opens up to her in a dressing room where Gomez says “My body is very young.” Gomez also adds that certain outfits make her figure look like “a 12-year-old boy.” Although she is talking about her costume for her Revival Tour — which got canceled because of her health — it goes beyond the awareness of her body image and her tension when it comes to having fame.
Taking a road trip back to her hometown, Grand Prairie, Texas, Gomez reunites with old neighbors and classmates, visits her middle school and returns to her childhood home. She reflects back on when she first got the call that she was chosen to be on “Barney and Friends” and how her life instantly changed. That moment was a turning point for Gomez — and since then, life has been a long roller coaster of highs and lows.
Gomez is well known for her Disney Channel role as Alex Russo on “Wizards of Waverly Place,” as well as several other Disney Channel films. However, during many interviews, Gomez states that she feels like a “product” and has worked so hard to get out of the “Disney reputation.” It’s been almost a decade since she played her role on Disney, yet interviewers harp on it instead of her other passions, such as her music, her makeup brand Rare Beauty and her philanthropy.
Connection is an important factor that Gomez values, and she receives that during her trip to Kenya for charitable work. During the trip, Gomez reveals her happiest self as she surrounds herself with inspiring, intelligent people. It was peaceful to watch and see her glow. Her devotion to philanthropy is obviously genuine.
Fame is not Gomez’s calling. However, she states “because I have the platform I have, it’s kind of like I’m sacrificing myself a little bit for a greater purpose.” Gomez feels she is famous for a reason and wants to use her resources to fight for what’s right for our society. She dedicates her time to go to the White House to demand the topic of mental health as a curriculum for grade schools, which is inspiring and necessary.
Panic attacks, tears and the darkness of stardom were revealed in the documentary, and it has affected Gomez in the worst way possible. It’s so heartbreaking to watch what she has gone through, and it only makes me admire her even more for how strong she is.
“My Mind & Me” is a documentary that exposes the pressure of being a young celebrity and we see Gomez’s true self in the most vulnerable state. Gomez clearly shows that her life is not perfect and battles with her health daily.
The film portrays the rough reality of Gomez’s life, however, I wish the documentary was longer than an hour and a half because there is definitely more footage that needed to be shown. This is a documentary to uncover the truth of Gomez in her physical and mental state, but it also teaches viewers about how serious mental health is and how anyone can be affected.
I encourage you all to watch it — and thanks to Gomez you can receive a two-month free membership for Apple TV+ as a gift for watching.
Photo courtesy of Anthony Quintano, Wikipedia.