Heckler (2007) Poster

(2007)

User Reviews

Review this title
54 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
6/10
Comedians Fight Back... Justified or Whiny? You decide.
gavin694213 September 2012
After starring in a film that was critically bashed, Jamie Kennedy takes on hecklers and critics and ask some interesting questions of people such as George Lucas, Bill Maher, Mike Ditka, Rob Zombie, Howie Mandel and many more.

The worst thing about this film is that it focuses on Jamie Kennedy, because the fact is that the clips they show of him are legitimately unfunny and unoriginal. If anyone deserves to be heckled, it is Jamie Kennedy. Not saying heckling is okay (I am undecided), but Kennedy is a failure.

The best thing? All the people they were able to get and the clips they found. Wow. If you have a favorite comedian, they probably appear here. And then, they got musicians, too. I was shocked by Barbra Streisand's presence, but shocked in a good way. She has more passion inside her than I would have thought.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
No comment...... on second thought
Quinoa198421 June 2009
A friend of mine once said something that I think is important to mention when bringing up the documentary Heckler produced and featuring as its guide/interviewer Jamie Kennedy, and it's about the whole process of movie-making. There's usually considered to be three steps: the writing, the shooting, and the editing. But there is a fourth part, arguably, and that is the film with an audience, how they react to it. I mention this because this friend of mine is an aspiring filmmaker who once made short films in college and would intentionally sit in with the audience to see how the film was received by his fellow student filmmakers and other people, and then would get reactions from everybody afterwords. As someone else, myself, who has also made short films and aspires to direct on a professional level, it is the most sobering and soul-crushing experience imaginable to be told a) your movie was great, b) your movie was a piece of s***, and c) what *was* that? And, the question comes, what if they were to write either (or all) of these?

So, as someone who has been on both the end of the creative stick and that of being in that leper colony of people who write on this God-forsaken den of vice and misery known as the inter-web, I respect and admire Jamie Kennedy for what he's done here. I'm reminded why I do what I do on here, and why this "comment" on his production of Heckler I've made personal - because, frankly, so does he here. At the same time I also have to realize with this movie, for everything about it that is funny- and at times it's not just funny but f***ing funny (re: Deep Roy's jacuzzi rant, Kennedy's confrontation with his own critics), it goes without saying that the documentary itself is not that great. It's insightful, it's meaningful, and I know that aside from little tid-bits and a few anecdotes, it's not staying in my collection as more than a rental. I would preface this by saying "I'm only being honest", but that would in turn suggest I lie often enough to have to mention it.

But, then again, what the hell am I doing on here than to say what works or doesn't? How can I write or say something constructive about a movie that is about the very subject of a monkey throwing verbal or written feces at a creative traveler? Do I write that it needs more, well, criticism on critics? On the nature of heckling? On maybe relaying the ratio of blood-alcohol content in a comedy club or at a keyboard to how reactions come out? Heckler can't really get much better, or worse, than it is. It's a series of stories and opinions from people talking about people who have an opinion. It is worthwhile to see that. Nobody can say they're not in the audience on some level, even if, as George Lucas says, you're a creator and not a destroyer. If you're at all in any field of entertainment, you create AND you destroy, to one degree or another, sometimes in crude terms like the gossip bloggers, and sometimes, well, you're Roger Ebert.

Whew. Bottom line, 'the fourth stage', as my friend calls it, is never an easy thing. If it weren't, then I and the creators wouldn't be here. Just remember the scene in History of the World Part 1: for every man making a cave painting, there's someone coming around to bring his urine sample to the equation. Perhaps Jamie Kennedy will, or already had by the end of the movie miraculously enough, come to terms with that fact of being in a business of comedy and movie-making: this is what you do, and that is most certainly what "they" do was well. It's a face. Certainly this is a first step into a world where both he and, in fact, Stanley Kubrick are fair game. And yes, I just compared Jamie Kennedy to Stanley Kubrick, so I may have just devolved this entire discourse. Whatever.
1 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Do what you love and what you are proud of and you are bulletproof.
lastliberal13 August 2009
This documentary could not have predicted the teabagger mobs that are currently appearing at town hall meetings and heckling the speakers, but it did show a clip of Ronald Reagan getting heckled to the point that he said, "Oh, shut up!" Of course, Barbra Streisand was a little tougher saying, "Shut the f*ck up!" Comedians, actors, directors, sports stars, anyone who entertains is subject to heckling. This film shows many of them responding to heckling that they have experienced, and there are also some actual clips where comedians, like Reagan, get heckled.

Bill Maher actual got up and threw a heckler out of the studio himself.

The film abruptly turned from heckling to critics, as if they are one and the same. I really didn't like that, but hung in there to see Nicole Mandich's breasts - totally unexpected.

The funnest part was seeing Uwe Boll pummel several critics in the boxing ring.

It was an interesting look at what artists have to suffer for their art.
0 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Why is film criticism needlessly controversial?
StevePulaski28 December 2012
If Heckler is anything for Jamie Kennedy, the film's prime target as someone who has gotten enough heckling for a whole night of comedy acts, it's a feasible and marginal catalyst for all the hate he has gotten over the years from not only critics but people who just seem cold to the idea of "accepting him." Having not seen many of his works, only Malibu's Most Wanted which wasn't particularly compelling but I've without a doubt seen worse, I feel the man is just the public eye's punching bag. He took the throne from Pauly Shore and Tom Green (both men appearing in this film as well) and decides to release his anger and frustration to the hecklers of the world.

A "heckler" is someone with intentions of curbing a person's current formal state. The term is commonly associated with comedy acts, when one arrogant loudmouth decides it would be fun and brilliant to disrupt the performer by yelling something unnecessary at them like, "you suck" or something along those lines. The first twenty minutes of this seventy-nine minute documentary focus directly on those kind of people, and have a variety of comedians such as Arsenio Hall, David Cross, Louie Anderson, and Lewis Black weigh in on the concept and how they've dealt with a heckler in their career.

The remainder of the documentary takes the questionable turn as it then begins to attack film critics and how miserable, sulky, pretentious, idiotic, lazy, evil, and out of touch they are if they rate a product harshly.

As an aspiring film critic myself, I've heard the argument frequently that if you've never made a film you have no right to criticize it. It's a valid point, but by saying that, you're stripping someone of their basic right to have an opinion. Do I need to be president to openly dislike one of his mandates/laws? Do I need to be a chef to say I didn't like this person's food? Do I need to be a landscaper to say I didn't like the look of this yard? Do I need to be a website designer to say I don't like the look of a particularly website? By saying that one is not qualified to state their opinion or look at a film deeply, picking out its flaws and examining its layers pretty much means that one can not have an opinion on pretty much anything unless they've done or experienced it themselves. It's not a sustainable point. One needs to accept the fact that by putting out a piece of work that the ones who pay money to view it in some way, shape, or form have a right to voice their opinion on it. I'm not condoning the action of listlessly shouting at a performer, but everyone has and should have the right to give a mature opinion on something regardless of it being positive or negative. I would've thought many of these comedians, doing a job that is very public and very open, knew that ahead of time.

I'm also not huge on the way this film compares hecklers to critics. First off, comparing film/media critics to some random, ignorant scrub yelling insults to a performing act is a facile, invalid point. One party professionally evaluates art and the meanings it could spawn, while the other gives a very immature, childish statement in an act of unnecessary disrespect. They're incomparable, except in the regard that they could potentially make the party at hand feel bad about themselves, which is not my personal goal when writing/publishing a review. When I give a poor review to a film, I give it to the film and not to those involved. I didn't think I needed to attach a disclaimer like this when I began writing.

Chunks of the short feature are devoted to other little ways different men in the business of film respond to criticism. Noted director Uwe Boll staged a boxing match between him and his critics, which I honestly can't believe. Unique it is, but if someone didn't like your film, what will make them like it if you beat them bloody in a ring, and what does that say about your acceptance of dissent? Eli Roth states the "death of film" are focus groups, little screenings of the first/second/third cuts of films where a private audience (usually made up of the film's target demographic) is invited to watch the film and voice what they like and didn't like. Instead of writing it off as a way for more people to bitch and moan about what they didn't like, filmmakers should think of these groups as ways to not only improve on their own work but connect with their demographic in a stronger way.

While it appears my criticism with Heckler's negative portrait of film critics runs a mile deep, this is nonetheless an interesting documentary, that serves as much more than Kennedy's therapeutic method of coping with sour critics/public. I just kind of wish any of the talents involved would've recognized that their attitude towards critics comes off as bitter and angry, when it's almost cemented in the job description for an actor/comedian. And I'd like to challenge Lewis Black on the fact that when someone's young they do not want to be a critic of any kind. At age five I knew that I wanted to be someone who wrote essays and reviews of films, giving ideas and different views of the medium.

Full, more complete review on http://stevethemovieman.proboards.com
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
Hmmm. . .
lazarillo28 June 2021
The premise of this documentary is to try to conflate hecklers and critics. The problem is the two groups are completely different. Hecklers (if you didn't know) are drunken idiots who try to disrupt performances that they themselves paid to see. Critics, however, 1. Are doing a legitimate job, 2. Only affect the people that freely CHOOSE to read and view them, and 3. Even if they are all virgins living in their parents' basement., are STILL far more entertaining than a ;lot of half-ass comedians like Jamie Kennedy.

It's weird to see someone come off so unlikeable in a documentary he himself directed. Kennedy tries to confront his various critics. But he loses all these confrontations as his only rejoinder seems to be that they're all just jealous because he rides around in limousines and gets more stranger sex than they do. But isn't that probably true of all celebrities? Why isn't Leo DiCaprio critically reviled?

I expect this from Kennedy (and maybe he's being ironic anyway), but it's sad to hear comedians like Bill Maher and Andrew Dice Clay complain about critics attacking THEM. If your JOB is to throw stones at others, guys, you can't live in a glass house. Maybe if an insult is funny it's not really mean, but then some on-line critics are pretty damn funny. The documentary ends with the famous footage of critically-reviled German director Uwe Boll beating up his critics in boxing matches (one of whom was a 17-year-old kid). But does that somehow make Boll any better of a filmmaker? And does Kennedy utterly failing to lay a glove on any of his critics in this weird doc make him any more talented as an actor or comedian? Hmmm.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Classic - much better than you'd expect
jadavix8 August 2019
I'm assuming nobody went into "Heckler", a documentary directed by Jamie Kennedy, and expected something as entertaining, hilarious, and insightful as it was. Watching it again just now I couldn't believe how gripping it still was; a rare film from the 21st century in which I did not want to miss a moment.

The movie takes the form of a rapid-fire series of testimonials from a staggering variety of individuals on the titular subject of heckling. At first it seemed that comedians would be the only people included in the film, which would have been fine by me - what other career choice features more contact with hecklers? However the movie's scope expands to feature filmmakers, musicians, dancers, models, sportspeople. Those who aren't interviewed are featured in archive footage, like the late Ronald Reagan and Barbra Streisand. George Lucas makes a personal appearance, as does the great Arsenio Hall.

In the process of putting these short form interviews together, Kennedy and his co-producer seems to have stumbled upon a startling fact as regards criticism in the internet age: that many critics are now no better than hecklers, not really criticising a performance or film but merely focusing their efforts on vicious attacks toward the people involved.

The movie is less successful as a kind of "journey of discovery" of Kennedy, who repeatedly questions critics about their harsh reviews of his much maligned movie "Son of the Mask", He wants to know why the critics hate him/his movie, when really he should be asking why the overwhelming majority of its viewers feel the same way.

His stand up is not much better, and you almost can't blame people for heckling - though I'm with Joe Rogan: A question I had throughout both my viewings is whether the material would be more powerful if it came from a genuinely respected comedian, somebody who had come through negativity to the bright light at the end of the tunnel as all comedians who end up success stories do. I'm still not sure about that. But one thing I do know is that "Heckler" is a classic documentary.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Fun and informative.
oscar-356 February 2013
Warning: Spoilers
*Spoiler/plot- Heckler 2007. A documentary about the increasing phenomena of people heckling performers during a stage show. Then the film topic investigates newspaper and Internet blog film critics, Internet stalker/bullies, and finally show how unimportant are most critics and what to do, anything with them.

*Special Stars- Jamie Kennedy, assorted comedians and artists.

*Theme- Creative people are thin skinned and so can be wounded by attackers.

*Trivia/location/goofs- Documentary. Comedy clubs and their green rooms.

*Emotion- For anyone in the creative pursuits, this is an well-done scholarly exploration of an important problem subject. Jamie Kennedy confronts and explores the hecklers and critics. These adversaries to performers come-up looking absurd, small, shallow and negative for their own jealous & selfish motives. This film also puts matters into perspective to those involved. This is an interesting and well produced film. Fun and informative.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Genius on the fly
winner5512 August 2011
A few years ago I wrote that the infamous Monkees' movie "Head" was an accidental masterpiece. Rereading that review recently, I realized that many people may have thought I was writing sarcastically, ironically. I was not. "Head" IS a masterpiece of cinema, even though it undoubtedly was not what the Monkees or the filmmakers intended, it is just so brilliantly put together that whatever the motivations, a real document of the '60s had been produced.

"Heckler," similarly, is a film that reaches way beyond its initial intentions. Filmed 'on the sly' (i.e., whenever they could arrange an interview) over a three year period, the film evolved from a 'behind-the-scenes' tour documentary into a study into the relationship between comics and their hecklers, into an essay on the problematic relationship between performing artists and their critics generally (especially those on the internet, such as at IMDb). This evolution marks its 'accidental' character - the filmmakers are not trying for depth, they find it because it is there, and demands attention.

Some of this movie is funny, even hilarious, some even disturbing. As it should be. The film asks why we want to voice opinions of work that is solely intended to entertain us. Some of the answer to that is not pleasant to confront. Are we jealous of the more successful? Yet even the equally successful seem to have their opinions - why7 The film leaves the question with us, preferring to resolve the problem of how artists (of various genres) should deal with it (learn from it, burn it, move on).

I learned a lot from this movie. The cinematography is - well, anyone who could hold a camera and hit the record button did so. The editing is wonderful. There's no intrusive commentary except a handful of title cards. The people are real and captured in as real a manner as the present day (post 'reality TV) allows. It's just a brilliantly put together venture, however it came about.

My favorite part? - and I think the decisive moment of the film - Andrew Dice Clay's confrontation with a worm of a CNN commentator who had not the slightest idea what he was talking about, and then moved on to a story about Art Carney! You won't learn a lot about the mysteries of the universe, but you may learn something about yourself.

(2 BTW notes - (1. The dance towards the end is fascinating. 2. The 'bonus' material on the DVD is uniformly excellent.)
5 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Geeky Randy's PERSONAL summary
Geeky Randy13 February 2015
As a 'Top Reviewer' on IMDb, I have written many film reviews in my time; however, almost all of them are capsule reviews that include a plot summary, brief pros/cons, and maybe a quick noteworthy piece of trivia to add an eensy bit of fat. However, none have been more personal than HECKLER. Here is a rare PERSONAL summary:

I first watched HECKLER a couple of years after its release. Nobody likes a heckler, so the generic title was really an eye-catcher for me. Also, being a horror movie fan, I have a soft-spot for Jamie Kennedy who played Randy Meeks in the first three SCREAM films—possibly the horror genre's most underrated supporting character. My first viewing was at a buddy's studio apartment, and he and I both really enjoyed it.

What brought me to replay this movie a few years later:

I had recently discovered that one of my books had gotten a * out of ***** on Amazon.com by a reader. It included something along the lines of "the characters are as flat as the paper they're printed on" and some other harsh words that I don't wish to continue breathing life into. Deep down, I knew I shouldn't have cared; I get reviews and some of them are good, some are mixed and some are bad—this person's review made it pretty clear that they either didn't understand important elements of the story and/or it simply wasn't their cup of tea. On the surface, however, it was difficult not to be hurt.

I actually decided to give HECKLER a replay and it really helped. Not only did it remind me that others receive this on a similar scale, but also that I created something that puts me in the spotlight to get heckled. In a way, whether my work was praised or criticized, I made an accomplishment that put me in a position to get reception from others—and just being able to have myself out there in front of the world like that is quite an achievement, and that fact is what I should be focused on.

Also, Perez Hilton made a commendable comment in a deleted scene, explaining that because he dishes criticism, he has to accept criticism from others in return. While it might be an obvious point, it's an easy one to forget when you're down-in-the-dumps due to a bad review. I have written hundreds of reviews; and, yes, on occasion, I am willing to be blunt. Therefore, I need to move on and not let such a First World problem affect me creatively or emotionally.

HECKLER is an excellent comfort film for anyone who is in a positioned to be heckled or negatively reviewed.

***½ (out of four)
1 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Jamie Kennedy and fellow actors/comedians unite to get revenge on film critics and audiences alike
Jackpollins9 July 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Jamie Kennedy has always been hated by film critics everywhere, and now he gathers his fellow actors/comedians to get revenge on those who hate their stuff. It explores how people go to comedy clubs just to yell "you suck" at them. Jamie Kennedy and comedians like Nick Swarsdon, Lewis Black, Bill Maher, David Cross, Dave Attell, Bobby Lee, Jon Lovitz, Kathy Griffin, ETC gather to tell these people to stop bothering them. They make such good points as if you don't like me, don't go to see my stand-up, at least i'm the one telling jokes, and my job is not to take crap from everyone. This is entertaining and insightful with some good stand-up bits. Waiting on the other side is an insight on film critics. Although these comedians cannot defend their criticisms with movie critics as well, Jamie Kennedy digs deep enough to prove good enough points. In fact, he does research. He went online and found wafflemovies.com. They wrote a review of Son Of The Mask, and hysterically quoted "who the hell is this guy?" Jamie Kennedy is extremely funny, and is right to get his revenge for getting panned. This is a great movie.... entertaining, funny, and insightful. I loved this movie. Seek it out at your local video store, and see it at all costs... you will not regret it.
2 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Ironic as Hell
ritera14 January 2012
I find it funny that this film is full of comediennes complaining about hecklers and critics. Isn't it the job of a comedienne to be a critic?

Sure, hecklers can be a pain in the ass as they are interrupting an attempt at creativity. But critics say what they think after the fact (i.e. comics). What's wrong with that? It's a matter of the opinion of one person. Sure, that opinion might be a landmine of bias and hate. But maybe it isn't. In the end, it's one person's opinion. ONE person.

Let me remind you that you will not please everyone all of the time, even if you are "good". All these whiners think that their ATTEMPT at creativity is the finish line. Gawd bless them! Most of the people interviewed likely make very good livings doing what they do. So they have succeeded with enough people to live comfortably. That isn't enough? It sure would be for me (as I'm also an aspiring screenwriter but have never been this blubbery about criticism).

Good for them. Good for them. I wouldn't dislike someone who can make a good living doing something that doesn't hurt anyone. But just 'cause something is created doesn't make it good to me. Listen to most people and they don't have a really high opinion of film, TV, music, etc. Some, sure, but never ALL of creativity.

Take a cue from professional wrestling. They THRIVE on being booed. They revel in it. Bad press is better than no press.

As for the film, I find it a repetitive, slanted, propaganda piece in favor of reasonably wealthy performers against critics who are infrequently represented. The few they had sounded reasonable. The very brief ending groped for balance but was sarcastic and equally vindictive about it.

Are you trying to tell me that Jamie Kennedy has no opinions? He's just non-committal and accepting of ALL creativity?
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Heavily influenced me as a reviewer
SeriousJest3 August 2013
The film begins by focusing on hecklers, as the term is generally used: people who attend live performances, like a stand-up comedy show, and attempt to interrupt the performers and shift the attention to themselves. I think an overwhelming amount of the public will agree that those people are annoying and in the wrong. Nobody is there to see the heckler. If you don't enjoy the performance, don't clap, don't smile, or simply leave…but don't interrupt everyone else's experience. Live-performance hecklers are like the ugly girl who CBs her friends at a party because nobody's talking to her. I enjoy seeing good comedians rip those people apart…and here's a secret: the guy with the mic will usually win that battle.

The brunt of this documentary, however, focuses on extending the term "heckler" to critics in general, including movie reviewers. To that end, Kennedy confronts people who have written scathing reviews about him, effectively demonstrating that they focus more on creatively bashing him than actually explaining why they don't like his projects or offering constructive criticism. He also points out that many of these individuals appear to be people whom you probably wouldn't want to have a conversation with, let alone take movie advice from them.

Several of the performers interviewed make the point that most critics haven't ever produced a successful piece of performance art themselves. I respect that argument for the concept that reviewers should be sensitive to the fact that producing creative material is not easy. However, I would counter that I don't need to be a chef to tell you that something doesn't taste good to me. I may not have a "refined palate," but for people who like the kind of movies I like, like the way I think, or otherwise relate to me, my opinion may actually be useful, despite whether the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences agrees with me. I mean, who the hell makes up AMPAS anyway? Google it. It's pretty interesting.

Kennedy and his diverse cast of performers also discuss how the internet has empowered a slew of people to take cheap shots at artists from the safety of anonymity. He compares the internet to a big bathroom wall, where anyone can just write whatever they want. I agree that it's much easier to rip someone mercilessly when you don't have to face them. On the other hand, as some of the cast acknowledged, a review that actually intelligently identifies what the critic sees as flaws in the performance can be a very valuable learning tool for the artist. Kennedy just ponders why you'd have to be a jerk about it.

Personally, I like the fact that we no longer have to rely on a select group of "published" individuals to tell us what's good and what isn't. A site like Rotten Tomatoes is very useful because it aggregates the opinions of critics as a percentage of likes versus dislikes, and distinguishes them from the opinion of the site users at large. It's a good starting point for determining whether you want to spend your valuable time watching a particular movie…but if you trust the opinion of a particular person, because you relate to him or her in some way, or because they have a good track record of recommendations, that can be even more useful. We at Live from the ManCave (www.livemancave.com) hope to be those reviewers for you, and we're thankful that the internet allows us to bypass all of the obstacles to voicing our opinions that existed just a couple of decades ago.

Moreover, the same medium that allows anybody to voice their opinion about art also allows any aspiring artist to bypass the old obstacles to publishing their art. For example, before the internet, talented artists had to court the attention of A&Rs to get people to listen to their material. A select group of people decided what music the public at large got to hear, and if one of them wasn't having a good day, your song might get tossed before the first beat of the first track reached a speaker. Nowadays, you can post your song directly to a social media site and let the people determine for themselves whether they like it. "Shares" and "Likes" are easy to count. A&Rs can't ignore someone with a million Twitter followers.

The film also acknowledges that artists ultimately control how criticism affects them. The point is driven home that artists are people, and like any individuals who throw maximum effort and hope into their projects, their feelings are going to be hurt when that project is negatively reviewed. However, as many of the interviewed performers state, artists have to acknowledge the intelligent criticism, discard the useless insults, be strong enough to brush negativity off their shoulders, and keep doing what they love with maximum effort. It may not be easy to do, but it's what you have to do if you want to be successful. Once the critics sense a particular weakness or sensitivity, the sharks will come feasting for blood, and it won't get any easier, as Kanye West has discovered the hard way.

Regardless of on what side of the foregoing controversy your opinion falls, this documentary does a good job of highlighting the issues in an entertaining way, and provoking thoughtful conversation on the subject. The film is well-edited, fast-paced, and generally interesting. While it definitely seems to be biased against the hecklers and critics, some of the interviews are not always a clear-cut win for Kennedy. The documentary appears to be kind of tongue-in-cheek, as Kennedy often acts sensitive and whiny when receiving criticism, but the film is also edited as to poke fun at him. In the end, you realize that he gets it. Don't be hatin'.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
To review or not to review?
nathanschubach28 October 2012
Warning: Spoilers
It's sort of weird to criticize a movie about criticism of the arts, such as this documentary, but the act of writing this review emphasizes our right to do so in a free society. My personal opinion about why criticism on the internet about movies and art became so popular is to either warn potential movie-goers or music fans about a particularly tasteless or unoriginal movie, actor, musician, or other artist…or to gain notoriety and fans of their reviews and taste, to be the one that others can turn to for the closest representation of their own feelings and taste.

In this documentary, comedian and actor Jamie Kennedy explores how criticism of his onstage, comedic works have transcended into an internet frenzy of opinions and reviews without censorship or, at times, deeper thought. He goes directly to the source of internet-hate and loathing for his works, calling out bloggers face-to-face who are trying to gain their own reputation for scathing, no-nonsense reviews. He explores old clips of comedians handling hecklers in creative and not- so-creative (and sometimes racist) ways, as well as interviews with other public figures such as dancers, musicians, and even sports stars.

I think Jamie did a great job by including such a broad stance on the arts and what criticism means to the artists involved. Ultimately, it's best to never Google yourself or remind yourself as an artist that even bad publicity is good publicity. As long as your name is out amongst other well-known names in any way, people will try and form an opinion about someone they keep hearing about, which means they will look you up on YouTube or somewhere else on the internet to find out what your art is really about.

But it's a natural reaction to dislike and try to convey your feelings about things you consumed and were not happy with to others. Jamie can never change this. If I bought a pair of $300 sneakers and found out afterwards how bad they made my feet feel, I'm going to review them and warn others, "Hey, don't buy these shoes. Here is my opinion…" That's what EVERYONE should be doing: tell other human beings how your experience was and make your voice heard. Comedians should work on a tighter set if they're getting blasted by randoms in the crowd night after night, never giving them a chance.

So in the end, I felt that this was more a movie about Jamie Kennedy's maturing process as an actor/comedian amongst other actor/comedians and how he deals with the inescapable criticisms he faces by choosing to act or perform a specific way. It happens to all of us in some way in our lives, but we learn to get over it, which I think he did by the end.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Jamie. Butch Up!
kamikaze-47 August 2011
Heckler is a documentary of minimal proportions. It tries to tell the true-life saga of stand-up comics and their battles with the dreaded heckler, or at least that's what the first twenty or so minutes attempt. After that, it's a no holds barred temper tantrum from Jamie Kennedy and his battle with critics who gave his movies, Son of the Mask and Malibu's Most Wanted scathingly bad reviews. Boo-hoo Jamie. You are so sensitive. As if those movies were critic's movies. You and everybody else making the films should know these types of films would never be critic's movies. I didn't particularly care for those two movies. I didn't feel it was necessary to leave my comfortable mobile home and pay over $13.00 admission, complete with over-priced concessions for a matinée showing of these movies. When Son of the Mask and Malibu's Most Wanted would make their appearances on premium movie channels, I felt I was justified in my decision not to see them at the theaters.

I think the main problem with the documentary is, the people getting the bad reviews, deserve everything they get. When mediocrity is being hailed as an art form or worse yet, as a real genius, that's when you, the public, need to draw the line.

Examples: Why should Paris Hilton be offended, or her feelings hurt when tabloid bloggers trash her character big time. I'm not making a public appearance without panties and allowing Paparazzi to photograph me in a pose similar to a Hustler magazine. Do you think Paris isn't doing this on purpose? Joel Schumacher should have been ousted from his throne in Hollywood for the abysmal, homoerotic themed, Batman and Robin. The movie is best described as "Hollywood hairdresser falls in love with George Clooney" I'm not homophobic, and I could possibly care less about Schumacher's private life, but this installment of the Batman franchise almost closed the Batman franchise for good. And he's incensed about critical raspberries? Another segment of the film is just plain silly and seems to be in the documentary to add more time. Internet Bloggers and their web sites. Jamie, and to all the others, if you really think a douche bag such as Perez Hilton has anything important to say, or if he criticizes you in a negative manner, you deserve your fate to walk the Earth as a broken person because somebody doesn't like you. And he has the audacity to claim not to contest his journalistic credentials? I am a big fan of Billy Zane. Really I am. If you would like to know about Billy (WHY?) do an Internet search and there is one website that is so inane. BillyZanesucks.com is its website. I took one look at the website and stopped looking. Whether it was meant for humor or just a bunch of douche bags spouting off about nothing at all, this website, as well any other website blasting celebs, is nothing more than a waste of bandwidth. Why are you so worried about what they have to say? One of the main problems with Hollywood stars, (or what counts for stars) these days, is you can just tell how many of these people got into the business. They got through the Hollywood system either through nepotism or a much more naughty way. Come on folks, you know the latter most likely is true. It seems these people have never had any legitimate contact with the mainstream public. Very few of these people worked in the real world. You never worked retail in a department store in the grungiest neighborhood you can imagine. In this department store, you had to be thick-skinned to survive. If you weren't thick-skinned, you either got a crash course in becoming thick-skinned or you left the store. I remember a young woman walked into the store, she was in her mid-20s, and had a note from her mother giving permission to use her credit card. I couldn't accept her purchase After a few minutes of her screaming and hollering, and using every racial remark imaginable regarding us white folk, she stomped off. I could have started crying, brooded about the incident forever (really I'm not brooding. I'm just giving an example) I just dismissed it with a shrug and mentioned to a co-worker who was shaking in fear, "They still breed that in Oakland California?"

Not one performer since the mid-1990s impressed upon me as working with the general public which heckling and other sordid character assassinations are the norm. And I don't mean working at a hot dog stand in the Valley waiting for the big shot producer/agent or whatever to take you on the ride of your life to Hollywood and beyond.

Well Jamie, if you are reading this, and I doubt you are. So what if Malibu's Most Wanted or Son of the Mask gt bad reviews, or I didn't like them. Look where you are and where I am. That's all that matters. If it's any consolation, I actually liked Kickin' It Old Skool. Hell, with my luck, you probably think that's your worst movie. Hey! It hit me in the right frame of mind. I'm certain it wasn't a critic's film. Get thick-skinned Jamie.
0 out of 1 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
excellent except for kennedy
gs2025 July 2010
I don't understand anyone's objection to this documentary. It is excellent in its interviews with many of the greatest minds in modern American comedy and it also brings forth some very cogent points about how we treat celebrity.........it is quite good with, of course the exception of jamie kennedy.........kennedy does not have the skill or delivery of don rickles or almost ANY of the comedians who have adopted that particular style of comedy.......attack, insult and put down comedy takes a very accomplished timing and delivery that he just doesn't have......that coupled with his annoying personality and punch me in the face demeanor just puts people off........most importantly, he is sadly not funny and is a poor actor as well.

However that does not negate the excellent interviews and archival clips in this offering.

So, if you want to enjoy this show just turn off the sound when kennedy is speaking and you will see how entertaining the rest of the film really is.
3 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Fun but Flawed Documentary
bean-d15 June 2012
This documentary is a lot of fun, mainly because Kennedy spends a lot of time interviewing interesting people and funny comedians. Not surprisingly, the comedians often have the most incisive, trenchant observations--often cloaked behind vulgarities or inanities.

Where the film goes awry is in its conflation of heckler with critic. As a teacher, I can understand the destructive nature of a heckler. There is no benefit in having a student make a smart alec comment while I'm trying to make a point. If the "heckler" truly wishes to help me, then he can come to me after class and offer a suggestion. I think the analogy holds with comedians--although my students aren't normally drunk! A critic, in contrast to a heckler, is not interrupting the show. He is assessing the show/performance/movie/music/etc. after the fact. Admittedly some critics can be jerks, but good criticism should work to make art better by defining the art and helping us to understand it deeper. (As a fan of Roger Ebert, I can attest that he does this for me.) Besides, many of us enjoy reading criticism almost as much as we enjoy the actual art. (In other words, any criticism Jamie Kennedy has against criticism can be turned against him: If you don't like my show, don't attend it. If you don't like my criticism, don't read it.)

One thing I think Kennedy fails to understand is that average people don't see a distinction between stars and characters. Jim Carrey is a real person, yes, but I don't know him and never will. To me he is as much a distant character as Ace Ventura. If I make a snide remark about how Carrey's career is on the wane and he deserves an early retirement before he can do any more damage, I don't mean this personally because I don't know him personally! There are several good books about "para-relationships" that people have with stars. Kennedy seems to think that we should relate to him the same way we relate to our roommate or our next door neighbor.

And that's my final problem: There is some hypocrisy here. Kennedy seems to be asking for sympathy for himself and his fellow comics: Hey, y'all, we're just people with feelings! But how many comics make a name ripping to shreds women, or Paris Hilton, or conservative Christians, or George W. Bush, or Bill Clinton? So it's okay to laugh these people to scorn, but please, oh please, be nice to me? As they say where I'm from: Don't play with the bull if you don't want the horns.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Funny and thought-provoking - creators vs. destroyers.
addicott1 January 2009
The title: Heckler might lead one to believe that the whole film is about standup comedians and their drunken, attention-starved arch-rivals. The gaze shifts quickly to film critics, both established and the legions of self-appointed online experts (like me... hey, wait a minute!!!). Apparently producer Jamie Kennedy has a bone to pick after the thrashing he got for his role in Son Of The Mask. (I sense he might not have been as motivated for this project if he'd just won the Oscar.) But it's not just him - he pulls up a virtual who's who of comedy and just about everyone seems traumatized and disillusioned to some extent.

Getting dozens of great comic talents like Harland Williams and Bill Maher to speak candidly for any length of time on any topic is a sure-fire way to guarantee some entertainment value. Ironically, this approach got more laughs out of me than most feature film screenplays.

Oh, there I go. I keep forgetting I'm part of this problem.

I was surprised to see the extent and the intensity of the online vitriol. A lot of what gets said does seem excessively mean and uncalled-for. Apparently morbid, extreme insults are a cheap way to gain notoriety and generate lots of web hits. (Just like shouting "YOU SUCK" is a quick and dirty way to gain attention from everyone in the auditorium.)

This picture clearly distinguishes doers from I-could-do-betters and the latter group doesn't fare very well under scrutiny. They showed a clip from Beyond The Valley Of The Dolls, screenplay by Roger Ebert, that makes makes Malibu's Most Wanted look worthy of the Palme D'or by comparison. And when 4 internet critics accept director Uwe Boll's challenge to a boxing match, well... let's just say they won't be lambasting his fight the way they did his films. (He pretty much knocks them all out, back to back, without even breaking a sweat.)

So as a documentary, I found Heckler to be very enlightening and provokative. (What am I doing here, picking apart other people's movies? Why don't I get off my ass and try making one?)
14 out of 20 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
not my sorta thing
FFAxDAVID6 November 2008
Admittedly i watched this because i was expecting from the reviews a funny movie/documentary,so is probably my own fault for expecting something its (presumably) not trying to be.

From what i can tell it is in fact a documentary made to somehow make us feel sorry for comedians etc for the heckles they get,and i went into it expecting it to be more about showing how comedians handle the hecklers and turn a heckle into the funniest part of their shows (which if handled correctly is often the case),but alas its not.

If you want to sit through an hour n half of Jamie Kennedy moaning about fact that a lot of people don't find him funny and getting others to moan about hecklers then sure,pay to see it,but if (like i was),your looking for a few laffs this is not for you.(this is NOT by the way a criticism of the movie,its just a comment in the hope that someone else does not assume like i did that its intentionally supposed to be funny-least i hope its not,because it is'nt lol)
9 out of 19 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Whiny tone drags down an otherwise enjoyable film...
HagenSteele11 October 2012
This film takes a look at the heckler, the critic, and those they target for praise or derision. The film draws from a wide variety of individuals, who share their experiences as members in the entertainment industry, and in the world of sports.

While the film is interesting and entertaining, I found the enjoyment factor to be significantly reduced due to the approach adopted by Jamie Kennedy throughout the film. Rather than using an empirical approach to explore the issues, Jamie Kennedy seems to go for a more personal and emotional approach, seemingly designed to garner sympathy. In my opinion, this approach was not effective, and tarnished the film as a whole.

I found it interesting to hear how individuals from a wide variety of careers handle the criticism that comes with their chosen profession. Most seem to share a healthy outlook on criticism and take it for what it is, an opinion. Others, however, are not as mentally resilient, and are seriously impacted by negative comments written about them by any given stranger, from any given outlet.

This film asks the question, "What makes a critic qualified to be a critic?". While seemingly a simple question, I don't believe it's possible to quantify WHAT and WHY anybody likes OR dislikes any given performance. We all have our likes and dislikes, which is why there is so much diversity in the world of entertainment and sports.

The film makes a valid point about the nature of criticism, in that rather than addressing what they liked and disliked, and why, many critics simply make unsubstantiated personal attacks that have little to do with the project they are critiquing. Fair enough.

Sadly, the film didn't address the enormous amount of "fake praise" by critics (EASILY observed here on IMDb), nor did they address the impact critics actually have on potential customers.

Who actually goes off of what a "professional" critic says? I don't.

I make my decisions based on the performers in the project, the subject, and the opinions of like minded friends and associates. I can honestly say that I have NEVER made a decision to see ANYTHING based on the opinion of ANY "professional" critic.

In the end, this film is worth a watch, and if you can ignore the "emo / wounded" approach used by Jamie Kennedy throughout the film, you'll find it even better than I did.

I'd give it 7 of 10 stars, however, I became annoyed with the whiny vibe put out by Jamie Kennedy throughout the film, so I'm taking 2 stars back from the total.

End total: 5 of 10 stars.
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
A commendable concept with less than fulfilling results
Mojochi22 September 2008
I suspect, as I'm one of the very few people to review this documentary, thus far, there is some likelihood that Jaime Kennedy might actually read it, as was evidenced in the film itself, often being his tendency.

I sincerely hope he does, as nobody can avoid criticism, and those that ignore it completely are destined to eventually loose touch, in some way, with their benefactors. We all face criticism. I work alongside surgeons, who give criticism to those who perform inadequately, the likes of which make the kind of harassment that a comedy heckler gives look like a prepubescent, shooting spitballs, from a straw. Entertainers don't have a corner on the market of pressure stress

I'm 38, live in my own home, and yes, I have opinions on what is or isn't entertaining, which coincidentally, I don't hold alone. I frequently agree on the value or valuelessness of entertainment with others. I'd suggest, that though we're not entertainers, we're still valid in our opinions, especially when they're informed, multitudinous and as it happens, the source of your income. I'd also mention, that I've spent some nights of my own singing dinner theater, and having people talk over it, and yes, it is rude, and ignorant.

Heckling is pointless, but though many critics are completely useless, vindictive attention whores, that doesn't negate the fact that hecklers and critics are wholly different things, simply sharing commonalities, and it doesn't mean that every critic is equally guilty of such. I know that when I've reviewed things, I try avoiding being a total prick, but as I'm occasionally a prick in daily life, some of that may show though. It's called Human nature.

I rarely spend the time to write a poor review, as can be confirmed on my comment history page, which only contains fourteen other reviews, to date, over the past two years, half of which are glowing recommendations. I rarely take pot shots at someone, because there is not much use in it, but I'll admit that when a piece of entertainment fails dismally to entertain, there's a small amount of fun that can be acquired in compensation, by publicly railing on it. Most of us have done it, in some way or another and that doesn't make us all terrible people.

On the point of the film, which I'll keep as separate from personal commentary as possible, in this wholly intertwined situation, I'm in agreement with the majority of the other critical reviews, I've seen here. The film begins interestingly, entertainingly, thought provokingly & humorously. The interviewed participants are some of the most qualified sources to be questioned on the subject of hecklers, and offered a captivating look into the lives touched by this kind of cruelty, that's endured, and the ignorance involved in perpetrating it.

Truthfully, the relevance of the Michael Richards scandal provides a welcome environment, for a film specifically devoted to the topic of those that have heckled comedians throughout Stand-up's history, & how it's been dealt with. However, the discussions in "Heckler" eventually became discussions about critics, never to return, or to find a commonality which could substantiate the digression, and was held as if it was synonymous with the subject of hecklers, which it's most assuredly not.

The film was doing something interesting, when it was handling the issue of the comic or performer, struggling against poor social conduct. That's captivating. Switching over to showing people complain about having to accept that others find their work less than sensational isn't. Brother, if I want to see that, I'll ask one of my crappier co-workers about their last performance evaluation.

It actually sort of disappointed me that this film was derailed, because when I came across the DVD, I had an impressed reaction to the notion that the subject of hecklers be discussed, in detail, via documentary, and in that way, the film's title is false advertising, or at least misleading to the film's true intent.

That's really all there is to say, of consequence, about the film, and the only thing that remains to say about the concept of dealing with criticism, is to offer some advice which I hope is beneficial.

You, as a performer, must have as widely diverse feedback as possible, or you will surely wither on the vine, or worse, be disregarded like yesterday's newspapers. Criticism is one of the ways that happens. Does that mean that every buttmunch claiming themselves a critic should have a direct plumbing line plunged directly into your soul, for the purpose of relieving themselves on you?

Of course not. So watchyagonna do about it, Punk? I'd suggest becoming savvy enough to be able to tell who's who, and just exactly what's valid and what ain't, disregarding the latter. It's not as hard as it might seem. I do it every time I'm on this website. It takes me about three or four sentences to know whether someone's completely full of crap, marginally literate, stupid, or whether they have an intelligent, informed, & worthwhile opinion. Jay & Silent Bob couldn't, so they kicked their asses

Get hip and start making the distinction, plus, be open to taking some lumps occasionally. You're a celebrity, for having become someone who entertains large masses of people. There are benefits that come with that, that the rest of us will never have. You can have a blessed life because of it. There's also consequences to it, and you need to come to grips with them, or get out. That's the nature of the beast. It can derail you if you let it. Ask Kurt Cobain, or Heath Ledger about their stress

People are mean, for no good reason, to each other just as often as they are to you. It just isn't headline news like everything else YOU do. Have some humility, and don't expect that you should be treated like a Faberge Egg.
9 out of 18 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Policing the Police
Bill-27612 April 2011
I want to try to be as fair to this film as possible, because it's clear from the comedians interviewed in this film that criticism from anyone can be taken very personally.

Since this film isn't about hecklers so much as it is film critics (it's a bait and switch), let's address the latter. Comedies in general have always been held, fairly or unfairly, to the same standards by most movie critics as an Oscar nominated Meryl Streep film. And that is unfortunate. I can be guilty of the same comparisons. However, I don't see that changing anytime soon, and as long as Adam Sandler's target audience remains 12 year old boys, many critics are not going to recommend his films. Sure there may be a caveat ("If you're a pre-teen...") but generally, critics are looking to recommend films not to genre-specific buffs or age groups, but to all audiences (unfortunately this isn't really examined in this documentary).

"Heckler" takes an almost defeatist approach at the hands of film critics when actually there is a solution. Using eBay or even IMDb as a prototype, the buyer and sellers on ebay, and the critics here on IMDb are graded by the readers or themselves, thus helping to weed out unnecessary incendiary and non-constructive deals and/or reviews. Does it work for movie reviews? Do audiences have a way to grade Roger Ebert or Leonard Maltin? No, but it's likely to happen very soon.

I would compare the current film critic industry to the news media in general before profiteering became so prominent post Cronkite. The news media and their personalities have nearly lost any and all respectable viewers. Bill O'Reilly draws 4 million viewers to win his 8:00 time slot. But that's only 1/4 of 1 percent of the population. The 4th estate has been so inept, and the difference between "experts" with special interests so intertwined, that's it's taken Jon Stewart to create what I've been calling "The 5th Estate" to police the 4th estate, because they haven't been doing their job of working for the public, but rather the government, special interests or themselves. And that's where I see the process of film criticism heading--toward a state of viewers policing and correcting, if necessary, critics reviews.

I like Jamie Kennedy based on what I saw from "The Jamie Kennedy Experiment". I haven't seen any of his films but they don't appear to be targeted at me. There's a place for silly farce, slapstick and toilet humor (The Farrelly Brothers...) And there's a place for very sharp dialog comedies with small but adult themes like "The 40 Year Old Virgin", "Superbad" and "The Hangover". Unfortunately, Kennedy's film fall into the former category, and it's difficult to gain traction among critics who only want to recommend films to wider audiences than the 12-18 year old demographics in the Adam Sandler vein.

"Heckler" is not a documentary I would recommend because it's filmed to be more of a defensive commentary on Kennedy's movies (or at least a cathartic release for Kennedy to confront his critics) than anything constructive about critics of comedy--which ironically and to it's own point, is self-defeating. The day will come when the poison arrows are graded. Jamie Kennedy is not for everyone, but that's OK, and great! But like Sandler and even Vince Vaughn, David Spade, Tina Fey etc... he needs to realize this himself, and the sooner the better.
9 out of 14 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Heckler: Entertaining, but extremely flawed
dyl_gon5 October 2008
It's a little weird – and very ironic - to review Heckler, a documentary that speaks out specifically on film criticism. Despite the title and promotional materials suggesting that it focuses on those who heckle stand up comedians, the film has a change of heart half way through, switching its efforts over to berating film critics. Therein lies one of the bigger problems with Heckler: the two topics don't have much to do with one another, despite Jamie Kennedy's, the star of the film, attempts at correlating them. Besides this major flaw, Heckler is an entertaining film. Personally, I disagree with nearly every point of view featured within Heckler, but the film held my interest, containing what must be hundreds of different interviews with celebrities.

The first half of Heckler focuses primarily on audience members at stand-up comedy shows who take it upon themselves to interrupt the performance, insult the comedian, or occasionally even try and steal the spotlight by finishing the jokes. While this may not seem like a big issue to most, the film demonstrates how hecklers have become an increasingly large problem for stand –up comedians. Interviews with a myriad of celebrity comedians, including David Cross, Bill Maher and Tom Green among others, show the frustrations, self-doubt and career repercussions comedians face because of unruly patrons. Heckler also documents some of the more extreme cases as well, including an assault on a stand-up by an offended viewer, a musician who smashes his guitar over an unruly mans head, and the infamous Michael Richards incident. This portion of Heckler does a good job of shedding light on an issue most people have never given a second-thought to.

This is soon abandoned in favor of bashing film critics, especially, but not limited to, the internet kind. There are a few legitimate points made about criticism, particularly how in the "internet" age, more attention is focused on deriding and humiliating the actors/directors who created the film, then critiquing the film itself. While this does show a gradual decrease in the quality of film criticism over the years, it's still very difficult to sympathize with the various film directors interviewed within the film, who all seem to take film criticisms, and the small jabs that come with many of them, way too far. Anyone working within the entertainment business has to have thick skin, it comes with the job. One of these featured directors is Paul Chilsen, who supposedly dropped out of film-making because his first feature got poor reviews. This isn't the fault of the critics; he simply wasn't cut out for the business.

However, no performer featured in Heckler comes across as infantile and whiny as the star of the film himself, Jamie Kennedy. It's a wonder the man ever made it through high school, as it is frequently demonstrated throughout the film that he is unable to take the slightest criticisms of his work. When confronting two teenage hecklers, Kennedy doesn't seem to care about the fact that his show was disrupted; his only concern seems to be that they didn't find it funny, as he begins to say "What do you know about comedy? Who are you to decide what's funny". They're your audience, Jamie. They paid money to see your show, and while they don't have a right to ruin it for others, they have every right to decide whether it's funny or not. If you don't feel like people should judge your work, perhaps you shouldn't be performing it for them.

Kennedy also begins meeting with critics who have given his last feature film, Son of the Mask, a bad review. It becomes more apparent that Kennedy just can't accept the fact that people dislike it or other films of his. He blames others for his own failures as an actor/writer. It's not just the insulting reviews that Kennedy has a problem with: he has a problem with any review that speaks negatively of the film. In Kennedy's dream world, everyone would be forced to enjoy every single piece of art out there, for fear of upsetting the artists. Kennedy takes offense to Richard Roeper's review stating he wanted to walk out of Son of the Mask. The ensuing confrontation is hilarious, as Kennedy attempts to change Roeper's mind by saying in all seriousness that the movie was trying to push new boundaries...by having a baby with super powers who could throw people. In another scene, Kennedy confronts a critic, Peter Grumbine, who seems to find Jamie's overreaction rather funny. At the end of the exchange, Jamie actually calls Grumbine evil, putting someone who dislikes his film among the ranks of Hitler, Charles Manson and Osama Bin Laden. Even if you still have the slightest doubt after watching the movie that Kennedy is overreacting, the deleted scenes should clear everything up: Kennedy freaks out on a friend who merely said one of his comedy bits didn't work.

Perhaps the most alarming thing is many of the director's insistence that no one has the right to judge their work, that anyone who speaks negatively of their work misunderstands it. It shows a complete lack of consideration for the audience, and makes one wonder why these self-proclaimed masters of film even bother showing their work to audiences if they don't care about the reaction. The one exception is Uwe Boll, possibly the most hated man in the film-making business. While he does have an organized boxing bout with critics in the movie, letting off a bit of steam, he never once speaks out against film criticism. Perhaps this is why someone like Boll is increasingly getting better (his two latest movies have had some support) while people like Jamie Kennedy, Joel Schumacher and Eli Roth are continuously getting worse and worse. In the end, it's not film criticism that's destroying the film business, but Kennedy's (and others) inability to learn from the criticism.
49 out of 67 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
In a way I understand but.....
stagedlined46630 July 2015
No artist likes receiving criticism. I understand that might be frustrating to have your hard work not pay off. But you can do one of two things, you can thrive on criticism or you can be so indulged with your self and whine about it. Guess which one is practiced in this movie.

To be fair I did like the first fifteen minutes of this documentary. Where it was about how hecklers during comedy shows need to stop and be polite etc. That part made sense. I for one hate it when people are rude during any form of entertainment. But when Jamie Kennedy changes the topic to attacking critics that's where it fell apart.

Not only are Jamie Kennedy's antics childish and rude, but also completely contradicting to the message against hecklers. And it doesn't help that Kennedy makes a fool of himself when he is interviewing a critic who gave one of his films a bad review.

Now on a positive note I at least do get behind some of what this documentary is trying to say. There are some critics who are bad at their jobs. Not giving the proper criticisms of the product's content and instead criticizing on how hot the actors are, and how many parts of a movie suck. But not all critics are like that. There are those who know what they are doing and give good constructive criticisms.

But what I can't get over is how is seems that most of these comedians and other artists think that critics should not even exist. That is just petty and unprofessional. Shouldn't artist be glad that their are critics to point out flaws so that the artist can try better next time? Well not for our Mr. Kennedy apparently.

So in the end I thought is was a terrible documentary. I'll admit I like the first few minutes, but after that it becomes an indulgent, childish and just down right disgusting experience.

So if there are any inspiring artists of any kind, I'd implore you to swallow your pride and listen to your critics. But only the ones that have actual good constructive criticisms. And if you don't you'll become egotistical hacks like the people that made this movie.
3 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Jamie Kennedy faces his critics, literally
kezopster20 April 2009
What a fun, insider look at hecklers and how they impact stand-up. The sheer number of different comedians who lend a story or an opinion to this movie is remarkable. If it had stopped there, it would have been an okay movie, but not very fulfilling. After setting up the initial premise, Jamie Kennedy wisely makes it more personal by confronting his own critics... both critics of his stand-up shows as well as critics of his movies (most notably, "Son of the Mask").

While other commentators say the movie veers off at this point, I disagree. Instead, I believe the movie hones in on its subject matter. From the sophomoric audience heckler being put on the spot to the sometimes equally sophomoric film critic being put front and center to speak for themselves... this is where the movie earns its chops.

Mixed in with these incidences of one-on-one confrontations with his critics, Jamie continues with anecdotes from other comedians, actors, and directors and their opinions of critics. It's not a movie about "what right someone has to express an opinion" as much as it is a movie demonstrating the impacts of that person expressing an opinion. Some comedians express clear zeal about slapping down a heckler; while others make it clear their feelings about hecklers. It's interesting to see how some comedians seem to just take a heckler in stride as being part of the business versus others who seem to believe that hecklers interrupt the flow of the show.

If you like stand-up comedy, but this movie on your "must-see" list right up there with "The Aristocrats" and a few others. It's fun, interesting, and entertaining. And if you object to the focus the movie takes on Jamie Kennedy, remember: it's his darn movie and who else could give us such a wonderful insider's view of bad reviews than someone who's received so many! Keep laughing, Jamie!
4 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
good into this world of a-holes
cobra_freak_00610 August 2012
this documentary goes into hecklers to critics to a-holes like us on the internet. one of the more interesting things i thought was in this film was about the movie critics and self proclaimed movie critics out there on the internet that claim they are being honest but are really writing crap about the person that made the film or the actor.

a few things they mentioned was Malibu's most wanted which even i remember people saying it was the worst movie they have ever seen. which to me i wouldn't say it was the best but i thought it was funny because i knew many kids that acted that way and saw the humor in it by dragging those kids in to watch it.

only thing i feel this film should of gotten more into detail about was the subject of critics and people writing bad reviews about movies they have never even seen. for example i remember listening to howard stern talk to a person who bashed his film, private parts, in the news paper and also said she never seen the film and never would.

overall i enjoyed watching this film and loved it when some of those hecklers got in the boxing ring with some "critics"
0 out of 0 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed