IMDb > Madonna: Truth or Dare (1991)
Madonna: Truth or Dare
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Madonna: Truth or Dare (1991) More at IMDbPro »

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Madonna: Truth or Dare -- Madonna: Like you've never seen her before. This movie reveals her as she really is, on stage and off--den mother to her family of dancers, sex goddess to her millions of fans, businesswoman, singer, dancer, the biggest star in the world of music
Madonna: Truth or Dare -- Documentary following singer Madonna on her controversial Blond Ambition tour in 1990.


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Release Date:
24 May 1991 (USA) See more »
Like you've never seen her before. See more »
Documentary following singer Madonna on her controversial Blond Ambition tour in 1990. Full summary » | Add synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
2 wins & 2 nominations See more »
(55 articles)
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User Reviews:
Whatever, girl. See more (52 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Madonna ... Herself
Donna DeLory ... Herself - Vocals and Dancer (as Donna Delory)
Niki Harris ... Herself - Vocals and Dancer (as Niki Harris)

Luis Camacho ... Himself - Dancer
Oliver Crumes Jr. ... Himself - Dancer (as Oliver Crumes)
Salim Gauwloos ... Himself - Dancer
Jose Guitierez ... Himself - Dancer

Kevin Alexander Stea ... Himself - Dancer (as Kevin Stea)
Gabriel Trupin ... Himself - Dancer

Carlton Wilborn ... Himself - Dancer
Sharon Gault ... Herself - Mama Make-up
Joanne Gair ... Herself - Madonna's Make-up
Jai Winding ... Himself - Keyboards
Jonathan Moffett ... Himself - Drums

David C. Williams ... Himself - Guitar (as David Williams)
Luis Conte ... Himself - Percussion
Darryl Jones ... Himself - Bass
Kevin Kendrick ... Himself - Keyboards
Oliver Crumes Sr. ... Himself

Warren Beatty ... Himself
Martin Ciccone ... Himself
Silvio Ciccone ... Himself
Moira McFarland-Messana ... Herself

Sandra Bernhard ... Herself

Antonio Banderas ... Himself (as Antonio Bandares)

Pedro Almodóvar ... Himself (as Pedro Almodovar)
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Manuel Bandera ... Himself (uncredited)
Julie Chertow ... Herself (uncredited)
Christopher Ciccone ... Himself (uncredited)

Kevin Costner ... Himself (uncredited)
Melissa Crowe ... Herself (uncredited)
Adam Curry ... Himself (uncredited)
Dewitt Day ... Himself (uncredited)

Freddy De Mann ... Himself (uncredited)

Matt Dillon ... Himself (uncredited)
John Draper ... Himself (uncredited)

Jean-Paul Gaultier ... Himself (uncredited)

Jack Larson ... Himself (uncredited)
Ana Leza ... Herself (uncredited)

Loles León ... Herself (uncredited)

Coati Mundi ... Himself (uncredited)

Olivia Newton-John ... Herself (uncredited)
Michael Opelka ... Himself (uncredited)

Al Pacino ... Himself (uncredited)

Rossy de Palma ... Herself (uncredited)

Vincent Paterson ... Himself (uncredited)

Mandy Patinkin ... Himself (uncredited)

Lionel Richie ... Himself (uncredited)
April Sandmeyer ... Herself - Backstage with Madonna (uncredited)
Clay Tave ... Himself (uncredited)
Alan Wilder ... Himself (uncredited)
Darryl Winston ... Man at elevator (uncredited)
Jose Xtravaganza ... Himself (uncredited)

Directed by
Alek Keshishian 
Produced by
Tim Clawson .... producer
Gregg Fienberg .... segment producer: Japan
Lexi Godfrey .... segment producer: Los Angeles & Houston
Steve Golin .... supervising producer
Lisa Hollingshead .... line producer: Paris
Madonna .... executive producer
Daniel Radford .... associate producer
Jay Roewe .... producer
Sigurjon Sighvatsson .... supervising producer
Film Editing by
Barry Alexander Brown 
Production Management
Stuart M. Besser .... production manager (as Stuart Besser)
Ahmed Bouchaala .... production manager: concert, France
Tim Harbert .... production manager: Japan
Linda Hess .... post-production supervisor
Christopher Howard .... production manager: Los Angeles/Houston
Chris Lamb .... production manager: tour
Andy Picheta .... production manager: concert, U.K.
Diana Seel .... post-production supervisor
Victoria Vallas .... production manager: concert, U.S.
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Eric Boulot .... second assistant director: concert
Darius Fisher .... second assistant director
Chris Rose .... first assistant director: concert
Art Department
Steve Archer .... carpenter: tour
Frank Carra .... carpenter: tour
Victor Davila .... carpenter: tour
Jim Dodd .... carpenter: tour
Lenny Guice .... scenic director: tour
Dean Hart .... rigger: tour
Tom Kelleher .... carpenter: tour
Bill Lawford .... carpenter: tour (as Billy Lawford)
Robert McKinney .... carpenter: tour (as Rob McKinney)
Bill Ness .... head carpenter: tour
Antony Phillips .... rigger: tour
Ted Schroeder .... carpenter: tour
Kurt Wagner .... carpenter: tour
Larry Yager .... carpenter: tour
Sound Department
David W. Alstadter .... adr mixer
David W. Alstadter .... foley mixer
Rick Ash .... sound re-recording mixer
Frank Baird .... sound crew: tour
Lon Bender .... sound re-recording mixer (as Lon E. Bender)
Lon Bender .... sound supervisor (as Lon E. Bender)
Simon Bishop .... audio communications: concert
Peter Brandt .... sound technician: Eurosound recording truck
Keith Carroll .... monitor mixer: tour
Simon Clark .... field sound mixer
Marco di Vittorio .... sound recordist
Marco di Vittorio .... sound recordist: italian version
Dino Dimuro .... sound effects editor
Bob Dreebin .... sound mixer
Victor Ray Ennis .... assistant sound editor (as Victor Ennis)
Tim Fraser .... audio communications: concert
Don Garber .... sound crew: tour
Scott Martin Gershin .... sound editor (as Scott Gershin)
Michael Haines .... field sound mixer
Per Hallberg .... assistant sound editor
Patrick Hanson .... field sound mixer
John Hays .... boom operator (as John Paul Hays)
Scott Hecker .... sound editor
Chris Hogan .... dialogue editor
Larry Kemp .... foley editor
Trip Khalaf .... house mixer: tour
Ken King .... production sound mixer: Europe
Mark R. La Pointe .... foley editor (as Mark Lapointe)
Mark Lanza .... sound effects editor
John Leaman .... sound crew: tour
Roger Pietschmann .... field sound mixer
Rex Ray .... sound crew: tour
Jay B. Richardson .... adr editor
Christopher Round .... audio communications: concert (as Chris Round)
Holger Schadir .... sound mixer: Eurosound recording truck
Tony Shimkin .... soundtrack
Dean St. John .... adr recordist
Dean St. John .... foley recordist
Wylie Stateman .... sound editor
Shane Swisher .... sound crew: tour
Eric Taylor .... field sound mixer
Audrey Trent .... foley artist
Jerry Trent .... foley artist
Appi Von Els .... sound assistant: Eurosound recording truck
Dan Wallin .... sound re-recording mixer
Nyle Wood .... sound crew: tour
John Soukup .... sound transfer (uncredited)
Visual Effects by
Scott Carleton .... optical supervisor
Dion Hatch .... optical camera
Georgie Huntington .... optical line-up
Dan Valliere .... optical timer
Camera and Electrical Department
Mark Adrian .... best boy electric
Laurent Andrieux .... second assistant camera: concert (as Laurent Andrieu)
Simon Archer .... camera operator: concert
Sergio Arguello .... second assistant camera: concert
Ali Asad .... camera operator
Hume Benedicte .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Alain Benoît .... grip: Louma crane (as Alain Benoist)
Mitchell Block .... first assistant camera (as Mitchell S. Block)
Oliver Bordini .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Faycal Bouchaala .... spotlight operator: concert
Eric Brechar .... dolly grip: concert
Jeff Brown .... technician: Louma crane
J.P. Bunlet .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Ned Burgess .... camera operator: concert
Eric Canda .... second assistant camera: concert
Chris Centrella .... grip: Louma crane
Bertrand Chatry .... camera operator: concert
Jeff Claire .... camera operator: tour
Martin Coppen .... gaffer: concert
Simon Coull .... first assistant camera: concert
Renaud Huot de Longchamp .... camera operator: concert (as Renaud Huot)
Richard De Vos .... dolly grip: concert (as Richard Devos)
Olivier Delpy .... dolly grip: concert
Patrick Devillers .... dolly grip: concert (as Patrick Deviller)
Hervé Dieu .... second assistant camera: concert (as Herve Dieu)
Vincent Dubrulle .... dolly grip: concert
Chris Duplech .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Alex Emmanuel .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Frank Farrugia .... telescan operator: tour
Rob Faulkner .... lighting technician: tour
Tristan Favre .... second assistant camera: concert (as Tristan Faure)
Anne-Marie Fendrick .... first assistant camera
Didier Frémont .... second assistant camera: concert (as Didier Fremont)
Benoît Féréol .... dolly grip: concert (as Benoit Ferreol)
Bruno Genin .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Dan Gillham .... gaffer
Christophe Goncalves .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Pascale Granel .... first assistant camera: concert
Olivier Greboval .... rigger: concert
Olivier Guillaume .... electrician: concert
Mark Guinn .... telescan operator: tour
Mike Hall .... lighting board operator: spotlight, tour
John R. Hamilton .... helicopter cinematography
Joe Hamm .... lighting technician: tour
Philippe Hatte .... lighting crew: Regiscene
David Hennings .... crane operator: Louma crane
Jerome Herbert .... rigger: concert
Jean Francois Hirsch .... spotlight operator: concert
John Hoffman .... lighting board operator: beam, tour
Richard Holborow .... best boy electric: concert
Watson Hudgens .... lighting technician: tour
Angus Hudson .... first assistant camera: concert
Peter Hutchison .... camera operator: tour
Nick Infield .... first assistant camera
August Jakobsson .... camera operator
Mark Johnson .... camera operator
Mark Johnson .... camera operator: tour
John Jordan .... first assistant camera: concert
Michel Julien .... spotlight operator: concert
Katalin Kalmar .... first assistant camera: concert
Christophe Lacoste .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Frédéric Lacroix .... grip: Louma crane (as Frederic Lacroix)
Christophe Lanzenberg .... director of photography: documentary, U.S.
Robert Leacock .... camera operator: concert
Robert Leacock .... director of photography: documentary, U.S./Europe
John LeBlanc .... camera operator (as John Le Blanc)
Eric Lesage .... rigger: concert
Todd Liebler .... first assistant camera
Richard Mall .... gaffer
Jim Malone .... video engineer: tour
Guy Masselier .... dolly grip: concert
Tom McCrackin .... engineer in charge of video: tour (as Tom McCracken)
Seamus McSwiney .... video communications: concert (as Seamas McSwiney)
Peter Morse .... lighting designer
Peter Morse .... lighting director
Olivier Neuman .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Doug Nichol .... camera operator: concert
Doug Nichol .... director of photography: documentary, New York/Europe
Françoise Noyon .... second assistant camera: concert (as Francoise Noyon)
Dick Ollett .... generator operator: tour
J.B. Pagani .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Pascal Pajaud .... electrician: concert
Andy Paredes .... best boy electric
Steve Parker .... first assistant camera: concert
Philippe Pavans de Ceccatty .... first assistant camera: concert (as Philippe Pavans)
Daniel Pearl .... director of photography: documentary, Houston
Jim Perry .... generator operator: tour
Thierry Petit .... spotlight operator: concert
Toby Phillips .... director of photography: concert
Vince Plodzien .... camera operator: tour
Michel Podik .... dolly grip: concert
Valérie Potonniée .... first assistant camera: concert (as Valerie Potonniee)
Christophe Pottier .... second assistant camera: concert
Thierry Pouget .... second assistant camera: concert
François Quillard .... second assistant camera: concert (as Francois Quillard)
Gregory Rapp .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Marc Reshovsky .... director of photography: documentary, Japan
Simon Richards .... first assistant camera: concert
Philippe Ros .... camera operator: concert
Jahn Sadleir .... second assistant camera
Jacques Sardo .... lighting crew: Regiscene
Richard Schoenfeld .... lighting crew chief: tour
Ben Seresin .... camera operator: concert
John Simmons .... camera operator: concert
Conrad Slack .... first assistant camera
Conrad Slack .... first assistant camera: concert
Antonio Soriano .... gaffer
Laurent Soriano .... second assistant camera: concert
Gordon Spooner .... first assistant camera: concert
Scott E. Steele .... camera operator: Japan unit
Jacques Steyn .... camera operator: concert
Michel Strasser .... dolly grip: concert (as Machel Strasser)
Jocelyn Thiéry .... chief rigger: concert (as Jocelyn Thierry)
Toby Tobias .... video communications: concert (as Toby Arnold)
Gary Katsuya Ushino .... second assistant camera
Eric Wagner .... lighting technician: tour
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Missy Coggiola .... wardrobe assistant: tour
Jean-Paul Gaultier .... costume designer: tour
Rob Saduski .... wardrobe: tour
Ron Seraile .... wardrobe assistant: tour
Marlene Stewart .... additional costumes: tour
Editorial Department
Erik C. Andersen .... film assembly assistant
Bill Babington .... first assistant editor
Anne Erikson .... associate editor (as Anne B. Erikson)
Dawn Hoggatt .... post-production assistant
Louis Marciano .... off-line assistant editor
John Murray .... editor: musical sequences
Dan Valliere .... color timer: answer print
Dave Hussey .... colorist: dailies (uncredited)
Music Department
Bill Abbott .... music editor
Bill Bottrell .... music producer
Paul Davies .... drum technician: tour
Alan Ett .... composer: additional music
Andrea Gerber .... composer: additional music
Don Goldstein .... drum technician: tour
Don Goldstein .... keyboard technician: tour
Don Great .... composer: additional music
John Griswold .... guitar technician: tour
Lance Krive .... guitar technician: tour
Steve Markland .... music legal clearances
Mike McKnight .... musician: additional keyboards, tour
Chris Ralles .... percussion technician: tour
Robert Salcedo .... music production assistant
Tony Shimkin .... composer: additional music
Melody Siroty .... music legal clearances
Peter Wiltz .... keyboard technician: tour
Jai Winding .... musical director: tour
Transportation Department
Ara Arzoumaian .... driver
Bub Beasley .... truck driver: tour
Mick Bryant .... truck driver: tour
Dave Daniels .... truck driver: tour
Chris Eames .... truck driver: tour
Roy Jackson .... truck driver: tour
Alan Kearsley .... truck driver: tour
Farbrezio Lombardi .... driver
John Long .... truck driver: tour
Danny Lynch .... truck driver: tour
Andy Marsh .... truck driver: tour
Armin Mayer .... truck driver: tour
Eric Owen .... truck driver: tour
Paul Parkinson .... truck driver: tour
John Portman .... truck driver: tour
Jose 'Futi' Sanchez .... driver
Lothar Schader .... truck driver: tour
Francesco Teresi .... driver
Charlie Whitehead .... truck driver: tour
Thomas Witte .... truck driver: tour
Steve Witter .... truck driver: tour
Falco Zanini .... truck driver: tour
Other crew
David L. Aaron .... typesetter (as David Aaron)
Eric Agid .... production assistant: concert
Flaminia Allvin .... production assistant
Brian Baran .... production assistant
David A. Baran .... production assistant (as David Baran)
John Barretro .... production assistant
Ernest Becaria .... production assistant
Albert Belmont Jr. .... production auditor
Fred Benoit .... production assistant: concert
Anne-Marie Blair .... caterer: tour
Gregory Bleechmore .... production assistant
Debbie Bray .... caterer: tour (as Debby Bray)
Eric Bretheau .... production assistant: concert
Vicky Buckland .... caterer: tour
Bridget Caron .... production assistant
Peter Chaplin .... cook: tour
Scott Chase .... projectionist: tour
Suzi Chelo .... production assistant
Julie Chertow .... massage therapist: tour
Christopher Ciccone .... artistic director
Rich Cieslowski Jr. .... production assistant
Jim Clayden .... mag runner: concert
Thierry Corcos .... production assistant: concert
Adam Cote .... production assistant
Melissa Crowe .... assistant: Madonna (as Melissa Crow)
Dewitt Day .... security: tour
Natasha De Betak .... production assistant
Marc De Jesus .... production assistant: concert
Freddy De Mann .... manager: Madonna
Dominique Delany .... production assistant
Edward Delany .... production assistant
Joanne Dennis .... caterer: tour
John Draper .... tour manager
Marie Edery .... production assistant
Darius Fisher .... production assistant: concert
Eric Fitz .... production assistant
Borja Folch .... production assistant
James Fortsen .... production assistant
Pamela Gatell .... ambiance: tour
Mitch Goddard .... production coordinator: Los Angeles
Philippe Godefroy .... production coordinator: concert
Nina Gold .... production assistant: concert
Darrel Green .... production assistant
Hjortur Gretarsson .... key production assistant
Mike Grizel .... road manager
Max Gronau .... production assistant
Thierry Hare .... production assistant: concert
Teness Herman .... ambiance: tour (as Teness)
Stacey Holmes .... production assistant
Tom Hudak .... stage manager: tour
August Jakobsson .... production assistant (as Agust Jakobsson)
Sarah James .... production coordinator
Michael Johnson .... production assistant
Nuala Keegan .... caterer: tour
Lori Keznetzoff .... production assistant: tour
Rick Kush .... production assistant
David Lande .... production accountant: tour
Dean Lawrence .... logistics: tour
Carol Lecacheur .... assistant production coordinator: concert
Benjamin Lehmann .... mag runner: concert (as Ben Lehmann)
Constance Lequesne .... production assistant: concert
Julius Lightfoot .... projectionist: tour
Chris Lombardozzi .... production assistant
James F. McCormick .... production assistant
Brooke Rand McDonald .... production assistant
Will McMillan .... production assistant
Doug McNeill .... tour accountant
Sharon Miller .... assistant: Mr. Keshishian
Sylvie Montigny .... mag runner: concert
Joe Montrone .... segment production coordinator (as Joseph Montrone)
Jimmy Nacar .... production assistant
Geoffrey Nightingale .... segment production coordinator
Bernard Ogez .... production assistant: concert
Marilyn Owens .... production assistant
Sharon Parker .... production assistant
Robert Parr .... trainer: tour (as Rob Parr)
Vincent Paterson .... choreographer
Vincent Paterson .... co-director: Blonde Ambition Tour
Leroy R. Perry Jr. .... chiropractor
Vincent Pierrat .... production assistant: concert
Nick Quinn .... mag runner: concert
Andy Raczynski .... production assistant: concert
Phil Read .... production assistant
Graham Reagan .... caterer: tour
Richard Redmond .... production assistant
Olaf Reistrup .... production assistant
Richard Edgar Rollins IV .... office production assistant: Los Angeles
Liz Rosenberg .... publicist: Madonna
Catherine Rubin .... production assistant (as Cady Rubin)
Suzanne Rust .... production assistant
Elizabeth Sabactes .... production assistant
Sarah Sandin .... production staff
Renee Sandmann .... assistant: Mr. De Mann
Robert Schick .... production assistant
Kevin Schiesel .... production assistant
Denise Schloss .... production assistant
Raymond Schloss .... production assistant
Paul Seitzinger .... assistant production accountant
Eric Seppi .... production assistant
Barry Shapiro .... production assistant
Jason Sperling .... production assistant
Nancy Sprague .... interpreter: concert
Kevin Alexander Stea .... assistant choreographer
Martin Sullivan .... production assistant: concert
Carrie Sutton .... mag runner: concert
Clay Tave .... security: tour
Alison Taylor .... caterer: tour
Todd L. Thomas .... production assistant
Juan Torres .... production assistant
Pierre Townsend .... production assistant
Jann Turner .... production assistant
Yvonne Valdez .... assistant: Mr. Roewe
Jane Von Kaenel .... production assistant
Alec Wade .... production assistant
Michael Winther .... production assistant
Smith Wordes .... assistant choreographer
Cristina Zamoyski .... production assistant
Lulu Zezza .... post-production auditor
Farley Ziegler .... interview researcher
Chip Garamella .... thanks
James Haygood .... thanks (as Jim Haygood)
Anne-Marie Mackay .... thanks
Angus Wall .... thanks
Bobby Woods .... thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"In Bed with Madonna" - Australia, Ireland (English title) (imdb display title), UK
See more »
Rated R for strong sexual dialogue and situations
USA:120 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Argentina:18 (original rating) | Argentina:Atp (re-rating) | Australia:M | Canada:R (Nova Scotia) | Canada:AA (Ontario) | Finland:K-14 | Germany:12 | Iceland:L | Portugal:M/16 | Singapore:M18 | South Korea:18 | Spain:13 | Sweden:Btl | UK:18 | USA:R (No. 31126)

Did You Know?

Concert video footage was shot at the Palais Omnisports de Paris Bercy in Paris, France in July 1990.See more »
Continuity: When Madonna is talking to Chris after the show in Detroit, her ponytail is removed first, then it's back on, then we see it getting removed again.See more »
Donna DeLory:Madonna, truth or dare?
Donna DeLory:Who has been the love of your life, in your whole life?
Madonna:My whole life? Sean. Sean.
See more »
Movie Connections:
Referenced in Saturday Night Live: Just Shorts (2009) (TV)See more »
In The MixSee more »


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69 out of 90 people found the following review useful.
Whatever, girl., 3 May 2002
Author: GroovyDoom from Haddonfield, IL

I came away from "Truth Or Dare" feeling the way I do when someone cuts me off in traffic and then gives me the finger. On the surface, it's a competent documentary, well-edited and interestingly photographed (even the grainy backstage footage).

On the other hand, the film is like having obnoxious personalities thrust at you with every turn. It wants to be a "controversial", no-holds-barred record of Madonna's large-scale Blonde Ambition concert tour. At the center of this carnival of hard-working but uninspired nincompoops is Madonna herself. Madonna certainly fancies herself the queen bitch, but also wants to show us that she's got a sensitive side too (like when she lies on her mother's grave in front of the camera). I had to laugh when I read other reviews that ascertained how this film shows us that Madonna is "just another human being". What did we think she was? An alien? A ghost?

I enjoyed watching the weirdness involving Warren Beatty. Some of it is curious too, such as when the only heterosexual dancer in Madonna's troupe tries to express the fact that he doesn't like the gay guys he is working with. His words portray him as ignorant, but about his co-dancers he is right on the mark--they are irritating in the same way a nest full of twittering birds outside the bedroom window at 4am would be.

The one thing that fascinates me about "Truth Or Dare" is that Madonna herself had control over this film, yet she comes off as a self-obsessed clod. She's like a real-life version of the Faye Dunaway character from "Network", interested only in success and having no depth of her own. So either she herself didn't realize how shallow it makes her look, or she knew her fans wouldn't notice it--or even stranger, perhaps they idolize her for being so self-centered and detached.

Madonna has always put on airs about herself (like the faux British accent she speaks with these days), but here you can see her stumbling over her various phony images and fronts, like in her decidedly inarticulate prayer before the show that she dedicates to Keith Haring ("...who doesn't have the luxury of being alive like we do..."). The "religious" Madonna chokes on her words and seems flustered that the camera is still rolling, then reacts with a self-conscious aside. Wow, look--Madonna is sensitive!

In fact she's so sensitive that her first reaction when she hears that one of her makeup staff was given a date-rape drug and sodomized is a giggle, albeit a nervous one. Then there's the infamous scene where she totally misses Kevin Costner's sense of humor and mocks him behind his back. Gad, she's so wickedly funny, isn't she? We also learn that Madonna is loyal, like when she excitedly waits to reconnect with a childhood friend, then disregards the woman when she says she'd like to name her unborn baby after Madonna.

The movie also posits that Madonna is an "artist" and that her music is her "art". It's hilarious to watch Madonna and her brother, Christopher, defending the more 'risque' parts of the calculated stage show by calling it a " have to go through all the different parts to get to the end." See? They HAD to do the masturbation scene.

This kind of self-important stuff seems to be norm for those working with Madonna. She certainly didn't invent this kind of elaborate stage show, but you'd never know it from the way the show is discussed in this movie. Elaborate concerts like this were going on decades before Madonna, and certainly with more substantial artists involved--Pink Floyd comes to mind. Although Madonna's show is opulently staged, it ultimately has little to do with live musicianship. Although there are musicians involved, Madonna is not one of them herself, and the focus of the show is entirely on her and her sets. Yet it doesn't seem to work as theater either, since the "journey" it is purportedly representing is vague, at best.

I can understand how Madonna managed to sell millions of records (even people less talented than Madonna have done so), but I have never understood how she has inspired long-lasting devotion in some people who seem to find greatness in her, and "Truth or Dare" doesn't give much insight to this. In fact, she seems to have succeeded almost in spite of her bitchy attitude and her tendency to either alienate or disregard those who have befriended her or worked with her. Her music is sometimes enjoyable, often unremarkable, and she seems to want to paint herself as an individual who is relentlessly driven to succeed and gets everything she wants, at any cost--as if ruthless ambition were something to aspire to.

While it may be true that Madonna is ambitious, "Truth or Dare" seems to overlook the fact that Madonna is also very clearly a product of a corporate entity, a mediocre recording artist who was so heavily promoted by both herself and her record label that she was bound to catch on. At one point Madonna makes much of her so-called "talent" for pushing peoples buttons (as if being shocking or titillating is difficult), and this may have been one of the ways she made her money, but you can bet that a bunch of guys in suits and ties have made a lot more money off of her. Her willingness to do anything to succeed probably looked pretty good to Warner Brothers records, so they lavished her with money and promotion and let her take off like an obnoxious little kid racing a bike down a hill. The thing that "Truth or Dare" taught me about Madonna is that she was the little kid who probably pushed all the other kids off their bikes so she would get to the bottom of the hill first.

Blonde Ambition, indeed.

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