I Am Comic | Chicago Reader

I Am Comic

Former stand-up comedian Jordan Brady interviewed dozens of comics for this documentary about the profession—so many, in fact, that the result plays like a joke file. The frame of reference is oddly narrow: Brady speciously argues that modern stand-up dates back to the 70s with George Carlin and Richard Pryor (never mind Mort Sahl, Lenny Bruce, Bob Newhart, Dick Gregory, Bill Cosby, or Woody Allen), and the subjects mostly laugh off the more dismal aspects of the job. While all this is going on, retired comic Ritch Shydner, who hit his stride in the 80s, tries to work up some new material at open mikes and comedy clubs. Comedian, a 2002 documentary about Jerry Seinfeld, revealed more about how a stand-up goes about his work, though Brady has assembled such a smorgasbord of talent—Jim Gaffigan, Sarah Silverman, Larry Miller, Margaret Cho, Kathy Griffin, Bob Goldthwait, Louis C.K., Lewis Black, to name only a few—that this can't help but entertain.

Credits

Director:

  • Jordan Brady

Cast:

  • Ahmed Ahmed
  • Franklyn Ajaye
  • Tim Allen
  • Ant
  • Craig Anton
  • Tom Arnold
  • JoAnne Astrow
  • Dave Attell

Producers:

  • Phyllis Koenig
  • Preston Lee
  • Robert Mickelson

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