* ½ (out of 4)
It’s hard to overstate just how big an impact Ruth Bader Ginsburg has had on American society. Back in the ’70s, the now-85-year-old Supreme Court justice already earned a claim to fame with her advocacy in landmark cases like Frontiero v. Richardson. When she arrived at the high court in the ’90s, she only further cemented her place in history with her opinions in cases like U.S. v. Virginia. And now, in the sunset of her life, Ginsburg has also become the most unlikely of pop culture icons, a “notorious” celebrity who’s referenced just as often in Hollywood blockbusters as in law reviews.
Ginsburg’s story, in short, is the kind that practically begs to be recounted, dissected, and interpreted on the silver screen. Unfortunately, however, Julie Cohen and Betsy West’s new documentary RBG proves woefully ill-equipped for the task.