This Is Me … Now: A Love Story review: Jennifer Lopez’s bizarre film is always watchable

Television: Self-funded streaming project manages to be a lot of things while also being nothing at all

Jennifer Lopez’s new streaming project, This Is Me ... Now: A Love Story (Prime Video from today), manages to be a lot of things while also being nothing at all. Self-financed by the pop star/actor, the 50-or-so-minute plunge into the J-Lo psyschosphere steals bits from Singin’ in the Rain, Beyoncé's Lemonade, Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton, Puerto Rican mythology and the Bioshock video games.

Working with director Dave Meyers, Lopez has wrought a towering inferno of romantic naval-gazing and a valentine to the Bennifer portmanteau, which rides again now that Lopez and Ben Affleck are an item once more. It is, in other words, bizarre. But it is never unwatchable – despite the lack of plot and its working assumption that we are all obsessed with J-Lo’s dating life.

One reason is because, for long stretches, This Is Me ... Now is just a glorified pop video, soundtracked by okay-ish, but not at all objectionable tracks from an accompanying album of the same name.

The songs are fine. And Lopez knows how to command the floor when surrounded by professional dancers. It’s the in-between bits that perplex – starting with Lopez reciting an old Puerto Rican folk tale about lovers destined never to be together. One is turned into a flower, the other a hummingbird. In the accompanying visuals, the duo bear a startling, if not frightening, resemblance to Lopez and Affleck. Forget Batfleck – this is Wackfleck.


An Affleck-like figure is again visible as J-Lo travels by motorbike across a flooded landscape. They hit the skids, and boom, they’ve crashed – their romance along with it. Next, there is a pivot to a steam-punk-style factory where a giant robot heart is about to catch fire. It looks like a cutscene from Bioshock Infinite – raising the intriguing prospect that Lopez has been salving her bruised feelings by playing 13-year-old PS3 games.

What follows is essentially incomprehensible. Various actors play useless lovers, husbands and boyfriends. A council of Mount Olympis-like figures inspired by the zodiac watches the drama from on-high: they include Trevor Noah, Jane Fonda and Post Malone (who tries to flirt with Fonda – it is unclear if he is acting or genuinely throwing shapes).

On and on, it unfurls, culminating in Lopez making peace with singledom while recreating the Singin’ In The Rain dance. Then, there is the final Affleck-affiliated twist. I won’t spoil – if you’ve made it this far into This Is Me ... Now and you’re going to be invested in the ending.

Suffice to say the conclusion is as bananas as everything else that has hit the screen in this baroque unleashing of Jennifer Lopez’s ego. Jenny from the Block has created a monolithic celebration of her innate J-Lo-ness. Good for her – you can only admire her for willing this $20 million project into existence and somehow convincing Prime Video to sign off on it.