Watch Being the Ricardos
Being the Ricardos is a biographical drama film from director Aaron Sorkin which explores the tumultuous lives of the legendary comedy duo Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz during the production of their iconic sitcom I Love Lucy. The film stars Nicole Kidman as Lucille Ball, Javier Bardem as Desi Arnaz, and J.K. Simmons as William Frawley, who played the couple's grumpy landlord Fred Mertz on the show.
Set over the course of one week, Being the Ricardos follows Ball and Arnaz as they navigate marital strife, professional pressure, and personal scandals while trying to keep their hit show on the air. The film takes place in 1953, during the height of I Love Lucy's popularity, and focuses on the behind-the-scenes drama that unfolded while the show was in production. This includes Ball's controversial past, her rocky relationship with Arnaz, and the fallout from Arnaz's alleged infidelity.
One of the film's main themes is the tension between Ball's onscreen persona as the goofy, lovable Lucy Ricardo and her complicated personal life. Kidman gives a stirring performance, capturing both the vulnerability and tenacity of Ball as she struggles to balance her roles as a wife, mother, and performer. Bardem is equally impressive as Arnaz, portraying the Cuban actor/musician with charm and wit, while also hinting at his insecurities and flaws. Together, Kidman and Bardem have palpable chemistry that makes their pairing as Lucy and Desi all the more convincing.
Simmons, meanwhile, offers a standout supporting turn as Frawley, bringing his trademark gruffness and dry humor to the role. The rest of the supporting cast is also strong, with notable turns from Nina Arianda as Vivian Vance, who played Lucy's best friend on the show, and Tony Hale as the show's head writer.
Overall, Being the Ricardos is a thoughtful and engaging biopic that offers a fascinating glimpse into one of the most beloved TV shows of all time. Sorkin's signature rapid-fire dialogue and smart, incisive writing make the film a pleasure to watch, even as it tackles weighty topics like sexism in the entertainment industry and the perils of fame. Whether you're a fan of I Love Lucy or just appreciate well-crafted storytelling, Being the Ricardos is a must-see movie.
Being the Ricardos is a 2021 drama. It has received moderate reviews from critics and viewers, who have given it an IMDb score of 6.5 and a MetaScore of 60.