Toni Braxton: UnBreak My Heart (2016 Lifetime)
Synopsis (via Lifetime)
The life story of R&B singer-songwriter and producer Toni Braxton.
The movie begins with Toni Braxton on stage performing an actual Toni Braxton. She passes out on stage from being overworked. That is when we get voice over from REAL Toni Braxton, she serves as the narrator.
Flashback to Toni and her sisters singing in a club for Baby Face, who wants to produce music for them. The only problem is Evelyn (Toni’s mother.) doesn’t want her daughters singing non-gospel music. Toni Braxton has other plans; she lands a recording track to La Face records. They only wish to sign Toni and not her sisters. Her family decides that Toni should take the deal. (Her mother Evelyn passed on a deal when she was young.)
Toni records her first single, and it shoots to the top ten. She works on her first album but doesn’t get as much say as she would like. Then Toni gets the iconic makeover with short hair and dress to match. They also put her on acne medication. (Which is a strangely specific detail.) Toni performs with Babyface on The Arsenio Hall Show and is a huge hit. So is her album; it goes double platinum. Toni earns her first million. Then she wins all the Grammys.
Evelyn tries to sell her other daughters to the record label. They placate her but don’t listen. Toni buys a new house, and her sisters help her move in/decorate. When Evelyn learns of Toni’s boob job, she tells her the industry has changed her.
Toni goes on a world tour with Kenny G (and her sisters) and works on her follow up album. The record executives want Toni to record Unbreak My Heart, but she is not into it. They insist she record it, and the song becomes a big hit. We are treated to a live version of the song IN FULL.
On her own world tour, Toni fronts the bill. She is four million dollars in debt due to a terrible record deal. She files for bankruptcy and can’t even pay for lunch with her sisters. She has her things repossessed, and the media circus follows. Toni Braxton gets terrible press. Her piano player Keri and her start dating. He is super sexy, and their relationship is sweet.
In court, Toni wins the case and is subjected to an NDA for ten years. Haha, I guess she has told everyone now. Toni gets to work on her next album, but she is pregnant. Due to the acne medication, she loses the baby. Keri and Toni try again and start a family.
Evelyn discovers that her husband is cheating on her and freaks out on him. The sisters have to come over and restrain their mother. Toni takes her mother’s side.
Toni Braxton does a Vegas residency, and her son is diagnosed with autism. She is more stressed than ever. She passes out and has a heart attack. She is diagnosed with Lupus and is advised to take time off and stop doing world tours. She cancels to residency, and the venue sues her. Keri and Toni start fighting because he isn’t used to being the caretaker. Toni file for bankruptcy again. The stress ends the marriage.
Tamar Braxton plans a reality show for her and her sisters. The network won’t sign on unless Toni is attached. She agrees to do the show and retires from the music business.
The movie ends with actual Toni Braxton singing “Un-Break My Heart.”
Very impressed with this biopic using Toni Braxton’s REAL signing voice and her involvement as an executive producer.
Minority Report: The entire cast features black actors.
🔪🔪🔪🔪🔪 (5 Knives)
🍷🍷🍷 (3 glasses of wine required.)
*Photo Credit: © 2016 Lifetime