Joan Rivers' new documentary “A Piece of Work” just debuted at Sundance. In order to show the reality of what is takes to stay on top in a merciless industry, the QVC Queen of Comedy granted a camera crew full access to her life for a year. Although I’m just dying to see what life is like behind-the-scenes for my favorite foul-mouthed comedian, it’s not scheduled to show at a movie theater near me any time soon.
Until I get the pleasure of seeing the movie for myself, I’ll defer to my favorite critic Roger Ebert (and if you aren’t already following him on Twitter, you should be!)
Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work If ever a movie has an accurate title, this is the movie. Joan Rivers gave the filmmakers access to her life for a year, she was frank, open and honest, and the result is one of the most truthful documentaries about show business I've seen. Also maybe the funniest.
… Rivers is 75, something she repeats several times, and at 67 myself I know it sounds condescending to say she hasn't lost a beat, but she hasn't. She remains one of the most transgressive and fearless of comedians, and one of the quickest, fastest and most merciless. The doc shows a life force of formidable energy. In one stretch she closes a show in Toronto, flies overnight to Palm Springs, does a gig, flies overnight immediately back to Minneapolis, and performs another one. She's upfront about plastic surgery, her husband Edgar, her daughter Melissa, and how after she left as Johnny Carson's permanent guest host he never spoke to her again and she was blackballed by NBC until last year. In the Q&A session Rivers gave her opinion of the Leno/Conan/NBC matter: "Fuck 'em all." Urgent to MSNBC: Feature this woman as a guest commentator and crawl under your desks.
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