Review: I Am Comic DVD

I Am Comic DVD boxSTUDIO: Monterey | DIRECTOR: Jordan Brady
RELEASE DATE: 10/12/10 | PRICE: DVD $19.95
BONUSES: additional performance footage and interviews
SPECS: R | 87 min. | Documentary | 1.33:1 fullscreen | stereo

RATINGS (out of 5): Movie | Audio | Video | Overall

What we learned from I Am Comic, Jordan Brady’s documentary on the funny and sometimes not-so-funny world of stand-up comedy:

Comedians can be crude — “The challenge is to make the worst, most horrific thing funny,” says Roseanne Barr.

Comedians smoke a lot of pot — “Most comics, if they’re honest, will not be able to recall anything they were doing on the road,” says Margaret Cho.

Comedians are generally broke — “I did a cancer fundraiser, and they gave me a stipend,” Kathy Griffin says. “And then I got stiffed by the cancer charity.”

But comedians are also pretty darn funny, which is what makes I Am Comic a laugh-out-loud watch rather than an introspective look at what can be a rough business.

Filmmaker Brady, a former comedian himself, interviews an all-star lineup of comics about the business, including everything from telling jokes to getting — or not getting — paid. The exhaustive list of some 80-plus comedians interviewed includes Janeane Garofalo, Jeff Foxworthy, Dave Attell, Louis C.K., Jim Gaffigan, the late Greg Giraldo and some who are still working the road trying to make a name for themselves.

There are lots and lots of stories in the documentary. Foxworthy recalls his first “You might be a redneck joke,” Sarah Silverman spills about a joke she borrowed from another comic, and Carrot Top admits that not everyone in Vegas wants to see his show, saying one attendee told him his was the “best show I ever went to I didn’t want to go to.”

The big names are funny and dishy enough to make this movie entertaining for comics and non-comics, alike.

The special features on the DVD are just as juicy as the main course, with Silverman pretty much selling out a major 1980s star.

 

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About Jennifer

Jennifer Netherby is a freelance writer who has written about movies, music and technology for Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Billboard and Video Business, where she worked as a reporter for nine years. She’s addicted to British crime dramas and Buffy the Vampire Slayer.