Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child Reviews

Top Critic
Rick Groen
Globe and Mail
October 8, 2010
Tamra Davis's documentary does serve as a worthy companion to Julian Schnabel's 1996 biopic.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Colin Covert
Minneapolis Star Tribune
September 16, 2010
In the end the art must speak for the artist; Davis wisely stands aside and lets the magical images tell their tales.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Carrie Rickey
Philadelphia Inquirer
September 16, 2010
A touching portrait that may not be the last word on the painter, but has facts and context to burn.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/4
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Sebastian Smee
Boston Globe
September 16, 2010
The intimate, home video footage -- which has never been shown -- feels poignant, a throwback to Basquiat's early days on the New York scene when he got by on his good looks, an elusive inner confidence, and the generosity of others.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4
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Kenneth Baker
San Francisco Chronicle
September 2, 2010
[Davis] underplays the place of drugs in the downtown club scene, treating the artist's heroin use as a nearly unaccountable late affliction.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
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Gale Robinson
Dallas Morning News
August 20, 2010
While it is wonderful to see so many Basquiat paintings, at the film's end the viewer is left feeling complicit in the exploitation.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
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Kevin Thomas
Los Angeles Times
August 19, 2010
Jean-Michel Basquiat: The Radiant Child is a remarkably rich documentary possessing depth, range, insight and compassion.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Stephen Holden
New York Times
July 21, 2010
If The Radiant Child embellishes the legend in a hundred small ways, its cleverest maneuver is to keep its subject at enough of a remove to enhance his mystique.
Full Review | Original Score: 3.5/5
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Joshua Rothkopf
Time Out
July 21, 2010
The legend of the artist's meteoric rise and fall (to heroin) is so widely known -- and already dramatized via Julian Schnabel's fine biopic, Basquiat -- that Davis is smart to go as personal as she can.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5
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Melissa Anderson
Village Voice
July 20, 2010
[Davis'] homage -- tender, never hagiographic -- also contains some biting analysis of the racism, both overt and insidious, that the artist was up against.
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Robert Koehler
Variety
July 7, 2010
Tamra Davis' labor of love... is a tender ode from one friend to another, but it's also another wheel in the hype machine that persists around the late, famed painter who blew apart the art scene in the 1980s.
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John DeFore
Hollywood Reporter
July 7, 2010
Lively and touching doc combines insider view of its art-star subject with smart present-day interviews.