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This is Paris is a YouTube documentary looking into the private side of the one and only Paris Hilton’s. Everyone knows who Paris Hilton is but her fame, I feel, was more popular with Millennials; however, this documentary reintroduced her to Gen Z. if you think you knew Paris Hilton, you have never been more wrong. This documentary opens your eyes to the fact that rich and beautiful does not give you happiness or security.  


The almost 2-hour film starts with various news outlets discussing the social light; this introduces us to who Paris Hilton was in the media’s eyes. Her life has been broadcasted worldwide since the early 2000s; she was the original influencer. Starting this “movement” is something that Paris herself isn’t too proud of she tells the producers she feels like she created a monster. Which could be the case; we live in a world where “famous for nothing” is a genuine way to fame. These “influencers” can make millions of dollars from only posting on social media; well, that was of fame is all thanks to Paris.

Anna Schultz-Girl Taking Selfie In Bed Orange Lighting
Anna Schultz / Her Campus

Throughout the documentary, we see how unhappy the star is. She’s always traveling; she stated that she travels over 250 days out of the year. Her life does not seem to have a lot of stability. That could be her fault; it’s hard to have stability when you don’t know who the real you is anymore. She continually refers to herself as a character and always plays a character when the cameras are on. As a viewer, I could defiantly see this. Her voice is constantly changing from a high pitch baby voice to a deeper, more natural tone. Even her walk is always evolving. Her posture when she’s “in character” is very proper and long, and when she’s out of character, she walks like an average person. While she gives off this beautiful sexy bombshell of a woman but in reality, that’s far from the truth. Her sister describes Paris’s real personality as a tomboy at heart. “She loves eating leftovers and just hanging out with her dogs,” saying that she sounds like “Homer Simpson.” I think it’s not easy to remember who you are when surrounded by people who worship you. At one point, a man who ran one of the biggest tabloids stated that some people were making a living off of photos taken of Paris; one picture of her in the early 2000s would be worth $50,000 to $1,000,000. That kind of worth is bound to go to your head.


Throughout the documentary, we see her struggling with her mental health, schedule, family, relationships, and inner daemons. She always seems to keep her cool through everything, which very much humanizes her. All she wants in her life is happiness and love, and honestly, isn’t that all anyone wants? When this was coming out, the trailer teased that it showed a side to Paris Hilton no one had ever seen, and trauma that she went through that she’s never shared before. There was something in Paris’ life that hurt her so deep to her core that it has affected every aspect of her adult life. On the surface, Paris is a beautiful, rich, blonde, vain, successful woman. But on the inside, she is still a scared child that suffers from PTSD, anxiety, insomnia, stress, and trust issues.

Sad woman with smudged mascara holding a fake smile
Photo by Sydney Sims from Unsplash

In her early teens, Paris was sick of her parent’s strict household. And at only 15, the NYC club scene became her obsession, and she never looked back until her parents forced her to give it up. She was sent to and escaped several behavioral camps until she was aggressively taken to Provo Canyon school in Utah. Men came to her house in the middle of the night, essentially kidnapping her, while her parents watched. This is something she still has nightmares about to this day. Her story was one that no one was expecting; in this age of speaking out, empowerment, and the #metoo movement, there’s never been a better time to right the world’s wrongs. that is exactly what several of her classmates thought too. One survivor came into contact with several of the women who survived the school and created the movement called Breaking Code Silence. At the school, Paris talks about how she was beaten, members of the staff would watch her shower, and she was drugged continuously with random pills. When she tried to tell her parents, staff members would strangle her and threaten her. She stopped taking the unknown medications, and the staff found the pills stripped her down, and put her in solitary confinement for 20 hours. At 18, she was released and did everything she wasn’t supposed to do. She left with a goal of independence and making $100 million. Both of these, she accomplished quickly.


Original Illustration by Gina Escandon for Her Campus Media

The documentary’s whole end is her and her Provo Canyon survivor friends organizing and accomplishing the movement. This documentary is so moving and eye-opening. I highly suggest you give it a watch if you are interested in pop culture, women’s independence, and female empowerment. Paris may put on a ditzy façade, but she is knowledgeable and incredibly inspirational. Mental illness and trauma will live in you no matter your net worth, how beautiful you are, or how popular you are. Help is always out there for you. Here are 60 digital resources for mental health if you or anyone you know is struggling.  

Jacqueline is a senior at West Chester University, located in West Chester, Pennsylvania. She is working towards her Bachelor of Arts degree in Media Culture studies, with a Strategic Communication Concentration. Jacqueline is also working towards her minor in creative writing. In her future, Jacqueline hopes to write a book and find a career where she can pursue her passion for writing and creativity.
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