Reviewing films, as much fun as it can be, is a duel-edged sword. On the one hand I can sit down and watch a film that people have worked months, if not YEARS on, and dismiss it with a single paragraph. One side of me feels genuinely guilty about this..the other side thinks “fuck you..that’s an hour and a half of my life I’m NEVER getting back..and YOU are responsible!!!”.
These thoughts came to me as I viewed Jamie Kennedy’s Heckler, a great documentary that examines the phenomenon of unwanted audience participation, the very personal attacks of reviewers, and how the internet has given voice to bloggers who would otherwise be sitting at home with their cats and wanking over the latest issue of Empire magazine.
Using extensive archival footage of actual heckling this compelling piece of work raises many a valid and interesting point, usually from the point of view of those on the receiving end, but in a nice twist Kennedy also confronts his harshest critics and asks them why they need to be so vitriolic and personal in their attacks. This part of the film is a revelation and you can’t help but feel slightly uncomfortable and embarrassed by the unreserved hostility and arrogance of the reviewers.
Some people will watch Heckler and accuse Kennedy of self-indulgent, titty-sucking whining…it depends on which side of the fence you are on (about Kennedy’s talent or lack thereof) upon watching it. Ironically, as much as I don’t particularly think much of Kennedy as an actor or comedian, I subsequently came away with more respect for him as a person.
Heckler includes interviews with a massive range of comedians, actors, directors and critics. It also includes coverage of Uwe Boll and his boxing matches against four of his harshest critics. Highly recommended.
DIRECTOR(S): Jamie Kennedy | COUNTRY: USA | YEAR 2007 | DISTRIBUTOR(S): Beyond Home Entertainment | RUNNING TIME: 169 minutes | ASPECT RATIO: 16:9 Widescreen | REGION: 4 / PAL | DISCS: 2