Opinion: Why the world suddenly turned on Jennifer Lopez

54-year-old Jennifer Lopez is no stranger to media scrutiny. Having enjoyed being in the limelight for most of her life, the singer’s attention is currently turning very sour, as is the public opinion surrounding her.

But is the relentless negativity surrounding JLo right now fair? Let’s dive in.

Jennifer Lopez is a long way from where she started off. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, the singer has never been shy of her humble beginnings. She has even immortalized this sentiment in what is perhaps her biggest hit, ‘Jenny from the Block.’

She sings, ‘Don’t be fooled by the rocks that I got/I’m still, I’m still Jenny from the block/Used to have a little, now I have a lot/No matter where I go, I know where I came from (from the Bronx)’

Now, in 2024, Jennifer Lopez has even more now than she did when the song came out in 2002. According to Celebrity Net Worth, she has a net worth of about $400 million!


And having spent over 30 years in the public eye as part of the entertainment industry, the singer and actress is no stranger to media scrunity or bad press. But the hyper focus on her recently might be something even she is not used to.

The singer peformed at the halftime show for the 2020 Superbowl with Shakira. The show was one of the most popular halftime performances in history. The performance and the lead up to it, was also heavily focused in the 2022 Netflix documentary titled, ‘Jennifer Lopez: Hafltime.’

The documentary also shows Lopez’s role in the 2019 movie ‘Hustlers‘ which earned her an Oscar nomination.

Accomplishing all of this at the age of 50 is no easy feat in an industry rife with ageism against women. With all of this success under her belt, Lopez was arguably at her prime.

So it is a little shocking to see public opinion on the singer turn so drastically just a couple years after she was perhaps at the peak of her career. One cannot help but question whether ALL of this could be linked to Lopez’s album that she released earlier this year, ‘This Is Me…Now.’


The music was not well recieved and the ‘movie’ project that accompanied it even more so. The movie has a 4.2/10 rating on IMDb and had scathing reviews from fans and critics alike.

I watched the movie and while it was not my favorite thing I have ever seen, I think the negativity she recieved after releasing it was unwarranted. Many artists have released bad music and bad films. The singer took a chance and it did not work. Turning on her so viciously seems like a tad bit much.

I have always been ambivalent toward Lopez.

So I decided to watch the movie and documentary to see exactly what was so terrible that it led to so much public ill will for the singer.

Her film, ‘This Is Me…Now’ while not my personal cup of tea, wasn’t the worst thing I have ever seen. The music film actively has Lopez poking fun at herself! It revolves around her penchant to fall into cohabitation at the drop of a hat. It heavily features her three failed marriages and her pattern of toxic relationships. The movie is about Lopez trying to find self love rather than rely on external validation. While it might have been poorly executed, it was not a terrible message to impart on viewers.


The documentary, titled ‘The Greatest Love Story Never Told‘ follows Lopez as she navigates the world of self funding her musical movie project. It takes you through what it took to film it.

And I actually found it very endearing.

The documentary starts with a crisis; the production studio has pulled out and they have lost their funding. Lopez makes the brave decision to self fund the project. She believed in thr project so much that she was willing to make the leap for her art.

She talks in the documentary how the project was inspired by her getting back together with Ben Affleck. The couple found one another again twenty years after they had first broken up. The first time they were together, Lopez released her album, ‘This Is Me… Then‘ which featured songs like ‘Dear Ben,’ a musical love letter to Affleck, who was her fiance at the time.

Having reconnected with her old flame again, Lopez was inspired for the first time in twenty years to make an album. Hence, ‘This Is Me… Now‘ was born. The new album featured a song titled ‘Dear Ben Pt. II.’ This seems almost like a full circle moment not just for her career but her personal life.


In the documentary, while Affleck is vocal about his discomfort at their love life being the focus of Lopez’s projects, he says he has made peace with it because at the end of the day, he wants to support his partner and if she feels inspired, so be it.

If Affleck can make peace with his wife making their relationship the focus of her projects and sharing their love letters with her musical collaborators, then why are other people so bothered?

As for the documentary, it shows Lopez in an extreme candid light. She is cognizant of the fact that people are not clamouring for the next JLo album. She is also very vocal about her fear of failing, sharing this fear with Affleck on camera, who helps calm her fears down.

Affleck is featured hevaily in the documentary. He is seen helping Lopez write her script, present at filming for her movie, and being there for her at multiple steps along the way.


And when I watched the documentary, I could tell this is just a woman in love who is very excited about the fact that she has gotten the ‘love of her life’ back. The man who might have been ‘the one that got away’ for her, made his way back to her. Lopez is just a woman giddy in love who wants to share her love with the world. And perhaps that is what is so hard for people to swallow?

Lopez, a rich successful entertainer, who has it all, also gets the guy? Maybe this is what irked people into finding her annoying.

Clips from the documentary went viral on social media, as people poked fun at Lopez. One such scene was her looking at herself in the mirror as she tousles her messy hair, saying, “I like taking my hair out like this. It reminds me like, when I was 16 in the Bronx running up and down the block. Crazy little girl who used to f—ing be wild and no limits, all dreams.”

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But when I watched the documentary myself, I was taken by how, almost earnest Lopez seems. To me, it was just a woman who is very happily in love and wants to tell the world. I did not even register the annoying scenes that were making rounds on social media.

No where in either the movie or documentary did I find that Lopez was full of herself. It was the opposite infact, she seems self critical and filled with a lot of doubt about whether her project would be successful.

So what did people dislike so much?

Maybe it’s because in society, we love to bring women down a peg or two. Female celebrities often complain about the double standard they are subject to. Look at other successful entertainers, like Taylor Swift, who is one of the most popular and commercially successful entertainers of her generation. However, the media chooses to focus mostly on her love life and not her professional success. Or perhaps take a look at the treatment of Britney Spears at the hands of the media and public. She was subject to countless derogatory headlines and inappropriate questions, all which were deemed fair and a price for fame.

While the tide is turning on how we treat female celebrities, we still have a long ways to go. Our treatment of women is still not as free of misogyny and sexism as we would hope.

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So perhaps the public loathing for Jennifer Lopez and the pleasure people are expressing at her recent bout of bad luck in her professional and personal life might have to do something with this too.

We never like to see a woman have everything; so it might feel nice to see her lose it all.

Disclaimer: Any opinions expressed in this article belong solely to the author and do not reflect or represent Newsner. 


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