Derrida (2002)

TOMATOMETER

AUDIENCE SCORE

Critic Consensus: Derrida's intelligence and engaging personality make him an intriguing documentary subject.

Derrida Photos

Movie Info

A portrait of the brilliant and controversial French thinker, Jacques Derrida, and the themes that haunt and inspire his work. The founder of a school of critical thinking that radically questions the nature of texts, the reader, and the multiple layers of meaning at work in language, Derrida's work has been a profound influence on analysis of literature, linguistics, philosophy, law and architecture. And although best known for his early work, this last decade has witnessed an outpouring of Derridean thought on a broad range of subjects from justice to national identity.
Rating:
NR
Genre:
Documentary , Musical & Performing Arts , Special Interest , Faith & Spirituality
Directed By:
In Theaters:
 limited
On DVD:
Runtime:
Studio:

Critic Reviews for Derrida

All Critics (34) | Top Critics (13)

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | October 17, 2008
Variety
Top Critic

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | January 25, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

I'm not sure you'll leave the movie understanding every nuance of 'deconstruction,' but you'll have a real sense of a sophisticated thinker.

October 24, 2003
Denver Rocky Mountain News
Top Critic

Exhibits a devotion to its subject that just might drive you to his books and make you wish for tea with the man who wrote them.

Full Review… | October 24, 2003
Denver Post
Top Critic

Derrida, with his mane of white hair, piercing gaze and pipe clenched between his teeth, may be the most watchable thinker since Rodin's.

Full Review… | March 14, 2003
Toronto Star
Top Critic

The picture's charm lies in the continuing by-play between the filmmakers and their subject, with each side doing its best to deconstruct the other.

Full Review… | March 14, 2003
Globe and Mail
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Derrida

If Derrida and postmodern thought interests you, you'll love it. I did.Groen's review nails it: The picture's charm lies in the continuing by-play between the filmmakers and their subject, with each side doing its best to deconstruct the other.

Morris Nelms
Morris Nelms

Super Reviewer

I'm not sure you'll leave the movie understanding every nuance of 'deconstruction,' but you'll have a real sense of a sophisticated thinker.

Greg Wood
Greg Wood
½

To say that Derrida has had a deep-seated, almost insidious impact on my life is no joke. He's always lurking in the back of my mind, a kind of undercover commentator, peeping out of my subconscious from beneath a grayish colored canvas tarp, waiting to pop up and insert a comment or two in any given situation.

He's like a general contractor overseeing the construction project of my house-life, with me up on the scaffold, counting on him to steady it while I build to higher heights. I look down suddenly, and wouldn't you know it: Instead of supporting the scaffold, he's lighting his pipe. I notice nothing but the dark bowl of that pipe. Vertigo sets in. The bowl expands before me, a black and bottomless pit. Is this the abyss. The scaffold rumbles and begins to shake apart. Derrida puffs thoughtfully at his pipe. I fall headlong into blackness . . . Nah, just kidding.

Jacques Derrida was cutting-edge influential back when I was in school, and he continues to be taught widely in college classes right now. And it's not just philosophy courses, either. Walk into a college bookstore and stroll the aisles. You can see him being taught in English, history, political science, education classes -- and on and on. An amazing man and an interesting portrait. His comments on biography/autobiography will be with me for a while.

At times, the personality that comes across in this film reminds me of the personality displayed by Bob Dylan when he was constantly being hounded to "explain" himself, early on in his career. His take on "forgiveness" tied my brain in knots. But that's Derrida. He's one of the great contemporary game players, one of the best tie-your-brain-in-knots thinkers worth the torture of grappling with.

Note: If you dig into Derrida, remember that he evolves, just like Dylan. He was no spring chicken, either, when he passed away, so like Bob, he'd been evolving for many years.

Lanning : )
Lanning : )

Super Reviewer

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