Hype! Reviews

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Top Critic
John Hartl
Seattle Times
March 18, 2015
The first-time director, Doug Pray, doesn't linger long on anything, but the movie is so crisply and intelligently edited that you never feel you're being rushed through it.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Dan Webster
Spokesman-Review (Washington)
March 18, 2015
An edifying, enjoyable and ultimately light-hearted look at the way that things have always gone.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Keith Phipps
AV Club
March 18, 2015
Hype! is a smart look at an important musical event that featured a lot of great music almost as a by-product.
Top Critic
Tom Moon
Philadelphia Inquirer
March 18, 2015
Between these lulls is a compact, interesting chronicle of an extraordinarily fertile local music community and what happens when its talent becomes a worldwide commodity overnight.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4

TV Guide's Movie Guide
March 18, 2015
Four years ago, Seattle was where the home of the Space Needle. Now it's a rock 'n' roll mecca: You may ask yourself -- how did we get here? And filmmaker Doug Pray has an answer.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Top Critic
Greg Kot
Chicago Tribune
March 18, 2015
The movie depicts a Seattle that is a good deal more complex -- and fun -- than the one that survives in most media overviews, a welcome antidote to woe-is-Kurt nostalgia.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Jamie Healy
Radio Times
March 18, 2015
While the seemingly endless procession of obscure bands does get a bit wearisome, it does at least mean this isn't the Kurt Cobain-skewed, cash-in feature you might expect.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5
Gary Thompson
Philadelphia Daily News
March 18, 2015
Seattle is overrun with record-company executives, and with journalists eager to over-analyze the most banal details of grunge culture. Can any form of music survive this process?
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
March 18, 2015
Doug Pray's 1996 documentary about the manufacturing of the Seattle sound is an informative and well-made collection of sound bites, music bites, and thought bites put together over several years.
Top Critic
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
September 7, 2011
[A] brisk, funny, scrupulously well-researched documentary.
Full Review | Original Score: B+
Top Critic
March 26, 2009
Superb sound and image quality and a complex, intelligent perspective help make Hype! an engaging as well as thoughtful chronicle of the Seattle rock scene during its decade-long rise to worldwide influence.
Emanuel Levy
EmanuelLevy.Com
August 7, 2005
| Original Score: 3/5
Sarah Chauncey
Reel.com
June 10, 2004
| Original Score: 4/5
Top Critic
Janet Maslin
New York Times
May 20, 2003
It's not necessary to share this documentary's taste for head-banging music, which it indulges with an exuberant array of concert clips, to appreciate its bemused, articulate interviewees and its larger wit.
Margaret A. McGurk
Cincinnati Enquirer
October 15, 2002
An energizing dive into a strange, strange slice of rock history.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Pat Kramer
Boxoffice Magazine
June 5, 2002
Hype! shows the cheesy, ludicrous, dark and decadent sides of grunge as well as the intense attraction and influence it has on its fans.
Top Critic
Kristine McKenna
Los Angeles Times
February 14, 2001
Structured in the standard "rockumentary" form that alternates performance footage with talking head interviews, Hype! derives much of its charm from the wonderfully likable bunch of goofballs Pray elected to interview.
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
January 1, 2000
A smart, ironic documentary.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
Top Critic
Chris Grygiel
Associated Press
January 1, 2000
Pray's documentary of the Emerald City scene is an irreverent, often hilarious ride.
Steve Rhodes
Internet Reviews
January 1, 2000
I am one of the least likely people on this planet to be recommending a documentary about the grunge movement in Seattle. Nevertheless, this review will do precisely that.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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