Tig Notaro has led something of a life that would crush anyone weaker than her. She learned she had a disease that would eat her from the inside out if not treated, then her mother died, then she discovered she had breast cancer. Normally this would be the time where someone would lay down and die and moan about how unfair the world is. But Tig Notaro sought comfort in friends and her craft of comedy and prevailed until the very end. Tig Notaro is one tough SOB, a woman who doesn’t ask for pity or sympathy during the documentary “Tig.”
She has plenty of opportunities to weep and mope around, but instead she stomps forward and presses on to a new challenge that will likely not conquer her, mainly because her spirit is so insurmountable. “Tig” isn’t entirely a biography of Tig Notaro, it’s really more of a film about a very tough period in her life, and how she tackled it head on. Tig Notaro was just like everyone else, a lover of comedy who spent her life on the road after dropping out of school. During a film shoot, she grows ill and a trip to the doctor sets in to motion a chain of events that are just absolutely soul crushing.
Notaro is really an individual who hits every obstacle with good spirited jokes, and self deprecating humor. She’s also shockingly honest about her life, telling everyone that will listen that she has breast cancer, and that she endured a double mastectomy. While it may seem shameless to some, she is really opening the dialogue for other cancer survivors, and she does so with blunt and brutal discussion. But she never once asks for a shoulder to cry on, because she spends much of her time trying to master the craft of being a comedian. After enduring painful medical therapy for her breast cancer treatment, she returns to comedy unsure how to approach stand up anymore, and is deftly afraid she may not be a good comedian anymore because of the pain she’s suffered.
Notaro doesn’t dwell on death very much, despite her great losses, and spends much of the movie trying to get the best out of her life. This is made apparent in the finale of the film through her romance with her best friend, as well as her mission to have a child through a surrogate. “Tig” is a sweet and lovely documentary about a truly admirable woman and shows audiences that just because life deals you hardships, it doesn’t mean you have to stop living. It’s only more of a reason to appreciate the remaining days you have on Earth.