The film, which follows the lives of supergroup, stars Keke Palmer as Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas, Lil Mama as the late Lisa “Left Eye” Lopes, and Drew Sidora as Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins.
During the two-and-a-half-hour show, we witnessed TLC’s history unfold, and while the truth is always more interesting than fiction, there were still life lessons revealed.
For younger viewers unfamiliar with TLC’s history, the film served as an introduction to arguably the biggest girl group in music history, but for long-time fans of the former trio, it was a heartbreaking story of how the music industry can chew you up and spit you out if you don’t know your worth.
CrazySexyCool highlighted all that was beautiful and unforgettable about the popular 90’s girl group, even while revealing their trials and tribulations. VH1’s portrayal of the group was right on point…. from their ’90s fashion to their girl-power inspired attitudes… to their classic music videos…. all were astonishingly spot-on!
It’s been said that Lopes’ family didn’t approve of the film, and it’s almost understandably so. While Lil Mama carried out the part effortlessly, the 40oz beer bottles in a brown paper bag were a bit much. Sure… we all know Left Eye had issues with alcohol, but did they really have to take it there?
There was lots of unspoken (but implied) drama in the film. In real life, Left Eye and former Atlanta Falcons player Andre Rison fought like cats and dogs and many times, the couple could be seen battling in the parking lot of popular nightspots.
Tionne ‘T-Boz’ Watkins faced challenging health issues throughout her career in the group and it seems she was hit hardest financially, possibly due to mounting medical bills. It’s revealed in the film that when doctors diagnosed her with Sickle Cell, they only gave her a 20 year lifespan and didn’t predict she would ever give birth.
Watkins has also battled a brain tumor, but throughout it all she’s manage to survive.
Rozonda ‘Chilli’ Thomas’ was once rumored to be involved with her label head, L.A. Reid (portrayed by Carl Payne), which was a bone of contention between she and Pebbles portrayed by Rochelle Aytes), Reid’s wife and creator/mentor of the group.
Usher, T-Boz, L.A. Reid, Chilli and Left-Eye…
The movie showed Chilli’s character going through the emotional pain of having an abortion and while it’s implied the child was Dallas Austin’s, word on the curb is that it was really Reid’s. But again… that’s all hearsay. Chilli and Dalls have one child together, a son named Tron.
Much of the remaining drama was associated with the group’s finances and it seems the blame was placed on Pebbles for that.
I thought that was a bit unfair…. it was Pebbles who got them a deal… it was Pebbles who developed them as a group… and if it wasn’t for Pebbles where would they be today?
Sure, the contract between TLC and PebbiTone may have been a bit askew, but had the ladies read the fine print and/or walked away from the deal, we wouldn’t have the classic hits we have today. It was clearly ‘Meant To Be’ as their new song suggests…
The CrazySexyCool biopic serves as a reminder of the uniqueness of TLC’s girl group. There was no social media back then, no self-promotion, but the ladies had the determination and drive to succeed that carried them through even the most difficult moments.