Janis (1974) - Rotten Tomatoes

Janis (1974)





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The short, electrifying career of singer Janis Joplin (1943-1970) is chronicled in this 96-minute documentary. Using family photos, interviews and concert clips, a fairly thorough portrait is painted of the dynamic, self-destructive R&B singer. With Joplin, what you saw was what you got: she is as volcanic and unpredictable off-stage as on. Janis Joplin's family had a lot of input in this production; thus, Joplin's music is given precedence over her private demons and her fabled substance abuse. Even so, the language is extremely raw at times, so you may want to preview the film before showing it to your kids.
Documentary , Musical & Performing Arts , Special Interest
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Universal Pictures

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Critic Reviews for Janis

All Critics (1)

It offers an honest up close personal look at the popular blues singer.

Full Review… | June 29, 2015
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

Audience Reviews for Janis


Good Documentary That Doesn't Get in Its Subject's Way Very good, narration-free documentary that intercuts performance footage with interviews. This is a straight compilation film, using then-existing material. I don't think there was anything shot specifically for this film. For such an electric talent, it is especially good that the directors just stay out of the way, and not try to staple significance, meaning or whatever to their subject. They just let Janis Joplin sing and speak for herself. And, that's the best thing you could possibly do for a Janis Joplin doc!

John Miller
John Miller

Wonderful documentary on Joplin. Oh the things we find on Netflix. Great old footage including in depth interviews and awesome concert footage.

Tracy Fortenberry
Tracy Fortenberry

Janis is a documentary/concert footage movie that I enjoyed because I love Janis Joplin and the whole hippy generation of music and lifestyle that she was apart of. As far as the movie goes, I expected a little too much out of it. I figured it would dive into some of her life, but really it was just dumb little surface issue interviews and a bunch of concert footage. Obviously it's watchable because Janis was a born performer and her eccentric, hippy atmosphere she exudes during her performances is trance inducing to watch. I just wish the movie would have strived to give us more information about Janis Joplin, but obviously the makers of it felt that they would just let her music to the talking for her. I can't really blame it for that I guess. The concert footage is really well done and it feels like you're at the concert watching Janis. The last concert shot of the film was the best, where Janis belts out, "Take another little piece of my heart now, baby" and invites the audience up on stage. She just keeps singing as all her tripping fans just dance around her. Janis is worth a watch, but I would say you have to be a true fan of hers to really like it. There's not much in the way of substance, so if you like to watch documentaries on icons like Janis for their stories and facts on them, this isn't the movie for you. I would have liked the movie to go that route a little bit more than it did, but as it is, Janis and her performances are enough to hold this documentary up. So fans of the genre and of Janis should give this one a watch. If anything watching her live in concerts will just make you more of a fan then you already were.

Melvin White
Melvin White

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