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Comedian (2002)

Cast: Jerry Seinfeld, Greg Geraldo, Sherrod Small, more...
Director: Christian Charles
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Rating:
Studio: Miramax
Genre: Comedies, Documentary, Biographies, Stand-up Comedy/Performance, SNL Alums
Running Time: 82 min.
Languages: English
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Synopsis
The world of stand-up comedy is explored from the perspectives of two very different talents -- one wet behind the years, another already a legend -- in this documentary from TV-commercial director Christian Charles. Comedian follows Jerry Seinfeld and Orny Adams as they navigate their way through the cutthroat world of New York's comedy clubs, each working toward the ultimate goal of an appearance on Late Night with David Letterman. For Seinfeld, hitting the clubs is a way of proving himself after his years of sitcom success; for the up-and-coming Adams, nightly stand-up routines are an avenue to bigger and better things, preferably comedy festivals, talk show appearances, and sitcom roles. The two occasionally cross paths at such Manhattan comic haunts as The Gotham Comedy Club and Caroline's, where they debate ups and downs of the trade. Comedian also reveals many candid, behind-the-scenes discussions between Seinfeld and such comic legends as Chris Rock, Robert Klein, Dave Chappelle, and Jay Leno, as well as rare glimpses of the star's personal life. ~ Michael Hastings, All Movie Guide

GreenCine Member Reviews

A stand-up guy by underdog June 27, 2003 - 10:33 PM PDT
12345678910
4 out of 4 members found this review helpful
A fun, occasionally illuminating behind-the-scenes portrait of the life of a stand-up comic, as seen through the eyes (and mouths) of one who's made it, Jerry Seinfeld, and one who hasn't yet, Orny (or is that Ornery?) Adams. It's essentially well-produced and edited, but not particularly earth-shattering. The film will be of particular interest to both Seinfeld fans, and to wannabe stand-up comics (or comedy groupies) who are keenly interested in the process of doing stand-up. Seinfeld comes off mostly great, he's likeable, he's surprisingly insecure (as the film follows his return to comedy after some years away, trying out brand new material), and generally extremely funny, and affable. The kibbutzing between him and some of his fellow stand-up comics (including Chris Rock, Mario Joyner, Colin Quinn and Ray Romano) is one of the film's highlights. Adams' story, however, is not quite as fun -- partially because he struggles more, he's more painfully (to the point of pathologically) insecure, and because he sometimes comes off as an obnoxious jerk (which he may very well not be, it could be a contrivance on his part or on the part of the filmmaker's to add more drama to the story-- but it makes it harder to care about him.) There are some fascinating moments in his story to be sure, and certainly there is more drama than in Seinfeld's story -- because you know ultimately Jerry will "kill" -- and it does give the film more balance. But frankly, I just didn't find myself enjoying that part as much. Both comics feel "real" however, so I guess that's saying something. I would've liked a little m more about Jerry Seinfeld's private life, too, but obviously that was not what he wanted (he being executive producer of this film) as he understandably has tried to keep his family away from paparazzi... but still. Ultimately, this is more than just time-filler, but not a lot more. You will definitely laugh and enjoy it, and you will definitely not want to start a career as a stand-up comic. Even Seinfeld gets heckled.




GreenCine Member Rating
12345678910

(Average 6.46)
95 Votes
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