This Is Stand-Up Pulls Back The Curtain

Bob Saget. Photo Credit: Comedy Central.

This Is Stand-Up pulls back the curtain and dives into the psyche of what really makes our favorite stand-up comedians who they are.

The listed comedians featured in this documentary also read like a Who’s Who of comedy.  You name them and said comedian is very likely to be featured.  This certainly isn’t to say that someone’s going to be missed here and there.  Not all the big names are included.

This is a film that’s told in parts, which is also pretty standard for documentaries.  In the long term, there’s nothing here that manages to break new ground for the genre.  All that aside, it’s like hanging out with old friends again.  Who doesn’t want to sit down and listen to the likes of Bob Saget?  There are other comedians of course but Full House was my favorite show while growing up.

When it comes to comedy, there is a fine line that you shouldn’t cross.  I also don’t think they go far enough in going over the material.  For instance, there’s a bit on transphobic humor.  You also have video clips of Ricky Gervais trying to make the argument that he isn’t transphobic.  If this is the case, why does he almost always do transphobic bits?

One has to wonder just how much is being left on the cutting-room floor in This Is Stand-Up.  Co-directors Paul Toogood and Lloyd Stanton manage to use their relationships with these comedians to get answers to the burning questions.

This Is Stand-Up isn’t the be all-end all of comedian documentaries but it’ll be a nice reprieve for a bit.

DIRECTORS:  Paul Toogood and Lloyd Stanton
FEATURING:  Judd Apatow, David A. Arnold, Dave Attell, Maria Bamford, Bill Bellamy, Gina Brillon, Cocoa Brown, Cedric The Entertainer, Tommy Davidson, Mike Epps, Jamie Foxx, Gilbert Gottfried, Eddie Griffin, Tiffany Haddish, Kevin Hart, D. L. Hughley, Mia Jackson, Jim Jefferies, Jessica Kirson, Bert Kreischer, Bobby Lee, Carol Leiffer, George Lopez, Sebastian Maniscalco, Jay Mohr, Jim Norton, Rick Overton, Paul Provenza, Chris Rock, Bob Saget, Jerry Seinfeld, Garry Shandling,  Sarah Silverman, Owen Smith, Kira Soltanovich, Beth Stelling, Taylor Tomlinson, Theo Von, and Keenen Ivory Wayans.

This Is Stand-Up airs April 12, 2020 at 10pm ET/PT on Comedy Central. Grade: 3.5/5

Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.