“The most powerful, loved, and hated film critic of her time.” – Roger Ebert on Pauline Kael (1919-2001). In a field that has historically embraced few women film critics, Kael was controversial, witty, and fiercely discerning. Her decades-long berth at The New Yorker energized her fans (“Paulettes”) and infuriated her detractors on a weekly basis. Her turbo-charged prose famously championed the New Hollywood Cinema of the late 1960s and ‘70s (BONNIE AND CLYDE, NASHVILLE, CARRIE, TAXI DRIVER) and the work of major European directors (François Truffaut, Bernardo Bertolucci), while mercilessly panning some of the biggest studio hits (THE SOUND OF MUSIC, MIDNIGHT COWBOY, DIRTY HARRY). Her creepy battle with Andrew Sarris and his auteur theory was legendary, and her stint in Hollywood, trying her hand at producing, was a disaster. Sarah Jessica Parker voices Kael’s reviews; filmmakers Quentin Tarantino, Paul Schrader, and Francis Ford Coppola and critics Camille Paglia, Molly Haskell, Greil Marcus, and David Edelstein speak to her enormous gifts and influence. (Excerpted from Film Forum).
NR, 98 min.
“Adamantly engaging, full of lively, appreciative voices that, more than anything else, bring her enthusiasm and keen-mindedness back to life.” - The Hollywood Reporter
“A celebration of the pleasure of intellectual and emotional response to art. Musters a heavyweight crowd of admirers and acolytes - with the odd demuring voice - and assembles a kaleidoscopic montage of movie clips, archive footage and Kael’s own home movies. Cinephiles will latch onto this lively, entertaining essay.” - Screen International
“All hail the queen. Kael was that rare creature, the superstar critic whose opinion could change the trajectory of a given film’s path to or from success.” - Hammer to Nail
“A no-brainer for film buffs. Candid and lively. Her writing still packs a punch and is as conversational as ever.” - Film-Forward.com