Paul Goodman Changed My Life (2011) - Rotten Tomatoes

Paul Goodman Changed My Life2011

Paul Goodman Changed My Life (2011)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Paul Goodman's 1960 best-seller, Growing Up Absurd, became a cornerstone of countercultural thinking, alongside books like The Medium Is The Message, The Autobiography of Malcolm X, and The Feminine Mystique. Goodman was a polymath: a poet, essayist, playwright, and psychotherapist. He was candid about his bisexuality while maintaining a marriage and raising two children. Jonathan Lee weaves together old and new footage of those who extol Goodman's virtues, as well as his adamant detractors (often one and the same), including Grace Paley, Ned Rorem, Deborah Meier, William F. Buckley, Susan Sontag, and Judith Malina. An abrasive and contradictory figure, Goodman's influence was nonetheless immense. Today, much of what passes as common knowledge in the fields of education, politics, psychology, urban planning, civil rights, and sexual politics was first posited by him nearly half a century ago. -- (C) Zeitgeist Films

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Critic Reviews for Paul Goodman Changed My Life

All Critics (20) | Top Critics (13)

It is generally pungent and enlightening.

June 19, 2013 | Full Review…

In this heady documentary, TV footage of left-wing social critic Paul Goodman being interviewed by conservative host William F. Buckley Jr. in 1966 makes one realize how low public discourse in America has sunk since then.

January 6, 2012 | Full Review…

As documentaries go, it's an able introduction that doesn't make its subject nearly as relevant to our current discontents as it could.

January 3, 2012 | Rating: 2/4 | Full Review…
Top Critic

"Paul Goodman Changed My Life" is a documentary about a man who changed mine.

December 30, 2011 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

The movie effectively uses Goodman's poems to illustrate his life.

December 30, 2011 | Rating: 2.5/4 | Full Review…

What makes him such an interesting biographic sketch for a film, however, is the way Goodman undercut his own successes.

December 9, 2011 | Rating: 3/4 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Paul Goodman Changed My Life

Goodman is a social commentator that I wasn't particularly knowledgeable about. He certainly played second fiddle to the Beat Generation and then later by Chomsky. I feel grateful for this film as a result. Goodman is certainly an intriguing guy and the film makers give him his adequate due.

John Ballantine
John Ballantine

Super Reviewer

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