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Dumbstruck stands as the definitive -- and, not coincidentally, the only -- documentary about ventriloquists. Read critic reviews

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Dumbstruck Photos

Movie Info

Five ventriloquists discuss their emotional attachments to their dummies.

Cast & Crew

Robert J. Ashman
Self
Willie Brown
Self
Roger Carroll
Self
Ed Casey
Self
Elon Musk
Executive Producer
George Reasner
Cinematographer
Douglas Blush
Film Editor
Daniel Licht
Original Music
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News & Interviews for Dumbstruck

Critic Reviews for Dumbstruck

All Critics (29) | Top Critics (14) | Fresh (21) | Rotten (8)

Audience Reviews for Dumbstruck

  • Sep 22, 2011
    Another wedge of American culture is tilled in this documentary, which starts at the VentHaven Convention of Ft. Mitchell, Kentucky, an annual meeting place for the film's five subjects. The film certainly hinges on their individual stories, each aptly tragic. At the crux is 2007 winner of America's Got Talent Terry Fator, who quickly rises from obscurity to become one of Forbes top ten best paid comedians. His talent and specific skill for singing hauntingly beautiful odes to Etta James, Louis Armstrong, and Guns n' Roses makes him the most interesting and watchable of the motley crew. We're also given introspective looks into lesser known ventriloquists such as cruise ship hopper Dan Horn, obviously the best manipulator in the business, with realistic facial expressions and mannerisms. The quirkiest is former Miss. Ohio pageant winner Kim Yeager, who is not as talented as her counterparts, always trying to get a job on the lucrative cruise ship circuit, or leave it all behind and finally settle down in Cincinnati. Quick flashes of a thirteen year old boy with a black dummy, which doesn't fit in any discernible way, and a woman who resembles a bird and speaks like a lost alien being are thrown in as filler throughout. Nothing is truly revealed or discovered about the art of ventriloquism, though they sometimes say encouraging things to one another about their skills. We do see inside the dummies, the vast props and things they must buy to accommodate them, and the affects of a life that revolves around playing with dolls. Yes, the characters all have their own obstacles to overcome, but none of their emotions are mined. We never see the depth of the father-son relationship concerning the thirteen year old and his masculine inclined father, or the desperation behind the fading beauty queen's lackluster act. It's not boring, but it could have been much better and culturally informative.
    Spencer S Super Reviewer

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