From Dolly Parton: Here I Am (2019), dir. Francis Whately (image courtesy Netflix)

On the one hand, Dolly Parton: Here I Am is unlikely to teach fans anything they don’t already know about the beloved country music star. On the other hand, Dolly Parton is a delightful human being, an endless hoot in action. That and a lineup of fresh concert footage, previously unseen archival materials, and new interviews with Parton and collaborators like Lily Tomlin make this doc worthwhile. It may not drastically recontextualize anything about Parton’s life and work, but it’s certainly an enjoyable watch.

The key pleasure of many basic music films is that, no matter how little they may venture out creatively, they can always coast by just getting out of the way of a talented performer. Given all the material featuring Parton they have, that’s more than enough to take this film a long way. Plus her husband Carl makes a rare appearance! There’s plenty to love here for dedicated fans and casual appreciates alike.

Dolly Parton: Here I Am is available on Netflix.

Avatar photo

Dan Schindel

Dan Schindel is a freelance writer and copy editor living in Brooklyn, and a former associate editor at Hyperallergic. His portfolio and links are here.