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The description of “Sex, Drugs, and Comedy’ is this…..
“Sex, Drugs, and Comedy” is a multicultural laugh riot for the YouTube generation. It is a raw, inside look at life on the road with some of the most brilliant up-and-coming comedians in the country. Starring Kyle Grooms (Comedy Central), Kira Soltanovitch (Jay Leno), Joe DeRosa (Comedy Central) and Brooklyn Mike (Dave Chapelle). From New York to L.A., from Vermont to Vegas, from Boston to Bermuda, filmmaker Ralph Richardson takes you deep inside the lives of these very funny comics. When a comedian’s car runs out of gas, his promoter takes over his hotel room to have sex with a groupie, and an unexpected snowstorm threatens to push his on-the-road budget past empty, you wonder why any of them do it. With “Sex, Drugs, and Comedy,” see their trials and tribulations, their pain and suffering, their joys, and their ultimate sacrifice just to make you laugh.”
That paragraph was written by a marketing guy and not a reviewer (to my knowledge, but at the same time I don’t know much, so it might have been). However, I placed it in this review because it serves a purpose. I needed some filler. That being said (or written) (obviously, it was “written”, but I need filler), the paragraph is not untrue. All of those things happen, and they are enjoyable. However, that blurb does not give this documentary enough credit, where it is due. I’ve always thought that every documentary has an ideal audience that would benefit most from it’s messages. Here, that audience would be young adults who are thinking of going into stand up comedy (yes, there are people in this world who are thinking of doing that somewhere). They are the ones who need to hear these messages, good and bad. Yes, there are very funny tales from the road, and yes, there is the ever-addictive feeling of being in front of an audience, but there are also (as pointed out in the film by many many comics) (“many” X2 (filler)) incredibly dark times. There are times without any money, times without decent food, times without other people. The loneliness is covered again and again. It is described as the hardest thing to deal with. So, for as much bright awesomeness that there is being a stand up comic, there are an equal amout of unhappy times. One comic said it nicely, “Comedy is pain.”
On that downer note… for wider indie audiences, this documentary falls into a bit of a trap. Different people don’t like certain comics. For example, I really like Sam Kinison (yes, I realize he is dead), but not all people do. So, do people who aren’t Sam Kinison fans really want to watch a documentary with him in it? Probably not (FYI, Sam Kinison is not in this documentary) (But, you have to admit, it would be pretty cool if he was, since he is dead) (I mean, come on, even if you aren’t a fan, if you knew he was dead, then popped up in a recent documentary, you would be floored) (That would be so Kaufman-esque (Look it up kids)). So, all of that being said (written) (filler), there are plenty of comics in this documentary that I am not a fan of. The good news is, they have a nice cross-section of comics to keep you interested throughout, but, they could have peppered them together a little more (that’s just in my opinion, and what do I know).
If you like documentaries, then you will find it interesting and worth watching. If you are a student of comedy, you will find it interesting and worth watching. If you are solely watching it for stand up comedy acts, you will be disappointed. There are a few full acts, but mostly one-liners here and there. But, you may be pleasently surprised to find some new favorites that you had not heard of before. For example, I was unaware of Kira Soltanovich up until now. She is very funny, very charming, and very sexy. Move over Anna Faris. Soltanovich is ready for her own starring sitcom. Someone sign her up. The other stand out is Joe DeRosa. He tells a story about puking on the subway (yeah, hi brow) that I found outstanding. And I’ll keep an eye out for both of them at my local Laugh Factory (did you like how I just threw that out there, middle America? “My local Laugh Factory”).
Anyway, all of that being said (sometimes twice (filler)), this is an entertaining indie documentary (is there any other kind of documentary), that doc fans should see.
“Sex, Drugs and Comedy” is available on AMAZON.