Top critical review
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Not up to Rock's usual high standard.
on 3 November 2009
Please note that I bought this on Region 1 and assume that there will be little difference with the presentation and editing of the stand up routine hence I'm only reviewing the show itself and not any extras.
I have enjoyed all of Chris Rocks' specials having watched them all several times both on TV and DVD but this one is just plain annoying.
Rock performs in three different locations during his tour, London, New York and Johannesburg and the producers saw fit to emphasise this with horrible editing that hammers it home by constantly switching the footage between the three locations. (Note to producers - you told us at the start of the DVD that it was the most successful comedy tour in the history of the world, we are capable of remembering this fact for ourselves without the constant reminders. In actual fact, I didn't care how successful the tour was, I just wanted to watch a Chris Rock stand up comedy DVD and have a laugh).
If you are planning to buy this I want to warn you that it is very, very distracting. Rock is wearing a different outfit at each location and the sound quality varies so you are halfway through a joke and the footage switches and becomes quieter and I ended up thinking more about how much the outfit and sound changes were irritating me than whether I found the jokes funny.
The jokes themselves are not up to his own high standards set by the other specials and I think Chris Rock is starting the believe the hype and get big headed, hence less work on the material.
The crowds at the three locations all seemed to be rolling in the aisles but I believe that they had all been drinking at the bar prior to the show and were just happy to be watching Chris Rock live rather than paying attention to what he was actually saying, which wasn't much.
I give this show 2 out of 5 because I just didn't laugh much. It was more like being mildly amused than laughing out loud like I did at his other HBO specials. I love stand up comedy and have many DVDs by a variety of different comedians and am easy to entertain but this just made me go 'meh'.
Unfortunately, I am unlikely to watch this again.
Chris Rock, please don't get involved with the hype and how much everyone 'loves' you. I know you've made your money and that you probably care less than when you started out on your career as you are now rich but if this will be the standard of your output for the future then please call it a day.