Joan Rivers: A Piece Of Work Reviews

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January 22, 2013
Full Review | Original Score: F
Felix Vasquez Jr.
Cinema Crazed
January 4, 2011
Laugh clown, laugh. Even though your heart is breaking...
Top Critic
J. Hoberman
Village Voice
June 8, 2010
For all the frenzied activity, Joan Rivers is less informative dish than infomercializing cliché.
Top Critic
Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger
June 11, 2010
"Oh grow up," Rivers used to snap. You wonder if she ever will.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Top Critic
Joe Williams
St. Louis Post-Dispatch
June 25, 2010
Acting is about honesty, and there's something evasive about both this film and its subject.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Phil Hall
Film Threat
July 15, 2010
One of the most depressing films ever made.
Full Review | Original Score: 0.5/5
Alicia Potter
Boston Phoenix
June 16, 2010
Revelations that the 75-year-old comic is needy, hard-driving, and relentlessly self-flagellating aren't all that surprising.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4
Armond White
New York Press
June 9, 2010
Nothing -- not even daughter Melissa's assessment of all comedians as "damaged" -- validates this worshipful portrait of craven showbiz.
Top Critic
Michael O'Sullivan
Washington Post
June 18, 2010
The insecurities that seem to feed Rivers's often angry humor -- and that have left her face looking like a mask frozen in horror -- are left unexamined.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Chase Whale
Gordon and the Whale
August 28, 2013
This delicious documentary did teach me about one of Joan's most important assets, and that's her dirty, dirty mouth.
Chase Whale
May 1, 2015
It's interesting, it's funny, it's heartfelt, it's heartbreaking, and it's dirty. Everything Rivers wants to be known for.
Annlee Ellingson
Moving Pictures Magazine
June 11, 2010
A fairly candid portrait of a workaholic driven by insecurity, resentment and fear.
Top Critic
Roger Moore
Orlando Sentinel
August 23, 2010
This behind the scenes, behind the makeup, behind the plastic surgery documentary catches Rivers hard at work, ridiculously hard at work.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Corey Hall
Metro Times (Detroit, MI)
June 23, 2010
Riveting doc dishes the dirt on the legendary queen of comedy
Full Review | Original Score: B
Perri Nemiroff
August 13, 2010
If you think it's going to be as hilarious as a Joan Rivers standup routine, you're wrong. The self-mocking jokes are funny, but almost make you feel guilty for laughing.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
Philip Martin
Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
July 26, 2010 may not come away from Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg's (blisteringly funny) chronicle of a year in the life of the comedian ... liking Joan Rivers, much less understanding her, but by gosh this movie is going to force you to respect her.
Full Review | Original Score: 87/100
Top Critic
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
June 17, 2010
She remains one of the funniest, dirtiest, most daring and transgressive of stand-up comics, and she hasn't missed a beat.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Lisa Kennedy
Denver Post
June 18, 2010
Were James Brown still with us, he'd have to at least share his "hardest working man in showbiz" honors with Rivers.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
At the Movies
June 14, 2010
You really do get the sense that she is tuning out the camera half the time and you're getting honest glimpses of everything.
Top Critic
Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune
June 17, 2010
Stern and Sundberg made The Devil Came on Horseback (about the massacres in Darfur) and The Trials of Darryl Hunt (about a wrongful incarceration nightmare), and they have a fine eye for detail.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
Top Critic
Mike Hale
New York Times
February 7, 2012
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