Though Madame X is billed as a “documentary film” and a “concert documentary”, it’s really a concert film – albeit a highly stylised and beautifully executed one. If you’re expecting backstage footage of Madonna grappling with the knee injury that sometimes interrupted 2019-2020’s ‘Madame X’ tour, you’ll be disappointed. But if you want to see the pop queen reinvent her live show with an even more devil-may-care attitude, it definitely delivers.

That knee injury had already forced Madonna to cancel several shows before Madame X was filmed in Lisbon in January 2020, but she doesn’t appear to be struggling here. Admittedly, it doesn’t feature as many high-octane dance routines as a typical Madonna gig, but this seems by design rather than necessity. The singer was so keen to make her latest theatre tour a more “intimate experience” than previous arena-filling juggernauts that she even banned audience members from using their phones. With 48 performers on the payroll, it’s hardly a stripped back affair, but Madonna is probably as accessible as she can be at this point in her career. During one interlude, she takes a polaroid selfie on stage, then sells it off to the highest bidder.

Read the full review at NME