Punching the Clown (2010) - Rotten Tomatoes

Punching the Clown (2010)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Punching the Clown Trailers & Photos

Movie Info

A modern-day troubadour learns the whimsical rules of the record industry after moving out to Los Angeles and becoming the subject of a vicious rumor. Henry Phillips travels through the heartland singing his satirical folk songs to anyone willing to give him the time of day. In the wake of a booking mishap involving a Christian fundraiser, however, Henry decides that it's high time he moves to a place where people can appreciate his twisted sense of humor. A few days later, Henry is crashing his brother's couch in L.A. But while his brother can't get an acting gig to save his life, Henry finds success almost overnight. A few solid shows later, and Henry gets a record deal, some radio airplay, and a positive write-up in a local paper. Not only that, but the pretty barista Henry's been admiring from afar finally seems to notice that he actually exists. Unfortunately, L.A. can be a fickle town, and when Henry becomes the unwitting subject of a nasty rumor, the success he's worked so hard to achieve suddenly begins to slip from his grasp.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Musical & Performing Arts, Comedy
Directed By:
Written By: Gregori Viens, Henry Phillips
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 18, 2011
Level 33 Entertainment - Official Site


Ellen Ratner
as Ellen Pinsky
Wade Kelley
as Captain Chaotic
Evan Arnold
as Don Chase
Mark Cohen
as Stupid Joe
Derek Waters
as Dave the Intern
Michelle Anne Johnso...
as Jane Crown Jones
Mike MacRae
as Car Heckler
Nikki Glaser
as Olympia
Ryan Stout
as Johnny
Eddie Berke
as Bartender
Warren Herr
as Café Manager
Matthew Morgan
as Last Cigarette Guy
Judd Fish
as Skinhead
Fay Gauthier
as Protester
Faye Gauthier
as Protester
Joe Kelley, Jr.
as Bar Patron
April Wade
as Party Guest
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Punching the Clown

Critic Reviews for Punching the Clown

All Critics (15) | Top Critics (8)

The comic folksinger Henry Phillips stars in this wry, poignant, smartly satirical comedy as himself, and puts himself into uneasy situations in which he doesn't always come out as the hero.

Full Review… | November 8, 2010
New Yorker
Top Critic

Every aspiring performer will appreciate Gregori Viens' unassuming comedy, which cheerfully skewers industry pretensions and media-fueled trends.

Full Review… | November 8, 2010
New York Daily News
Top Critic

Familiar show-business satire is enlivened by genuinely witty, off-kilter humor.

Full Review… | October 30, 2010
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic

[If it] isn't entirely successful, it's partly because the music -- late-night satire swathed in gentle folkie chords -- and Mr. Phillips's modest but knowing manner don't quite match up with the "Star Is Born" clichés of the plot.

Full Review… | October 22, 2010
New York Times
Top Critic

Punching the Clown is welcome proof that there remains at least one industry in which the US can compete with New Zealand: the parody folk-song business.

Full Review… | October 22, 2010
New York Post
Top Critic

A partly biographical, drolly fabricated comedy.

Full Review… | October 21, 2010
Village Voice
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Punching the Clown

This is a good film for anyone aspiring to be successfully in Hollywood. every part of this film worked for me except i didin't find this comedy song maker's songs very funny. This wouldn't be such a bad thing but the premis of the movie is he cant get a break while there are crappyer guys out there who get all the success. Full of funny LA situations, there a little "curb your enthusiasm" in this. You do feel pretty invested in a guy i had never heard of and who is playing himself.


Partly a musical comedy performance film, partly an endearing little fish/big pond narrative comedy, partly a Hollywood cautionary tale mockumentary, 100% satisfying.

If it isn't entirely successful, it's partly because the music -- late-night satire swathed in gentle folkie chords -- and Mr. Phillips's modest but knowing manner don't quite match up with the "Star Is Born" cliches of the plot.

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