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3.3 out of 5 stars30
3.3 out of 5 stars
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on 8 January 2007
Yes, it's a documentary, yes, it's not high budget, and yes, the comedy is very black. But frankly if you're going to criticize the joke for not being funny or the humor for being too dark then you lack the intellect to appreciate it and this movie isn't for you. The whole point of the Aristocrats joke is that it ISN'T funny but that it becomes funny in the telling by making it as shocking as possible.

Ignore the other reviews - this IS a good movie, and if you can't see that then I suggest you restrict your purchases to "wacky comedies" involving Adam Sandler or Vince Vaughn.
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on 30 March 2015
gets there in the end
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on 3 January 2006
This film was hilarious. Granted it was tasteless and crude, but that was the point. It shows how different comedians can take this very old, very simple joke and make it their own. The comedy pedigree of the cast is second to none and that really lent weight to the film. When I went to see it it was at a small cinema, but it actually got a standing ovation and I thought this was well deserved.
Be warned though - this is not for the faint-hearted/easily offended!
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on 10 February 2006
I was introduced to this film by an old housemate who had downloaded the south park clip in the film and it did wet my palette somewhat for the direction of the film. The problem with the film is that you don’t really get any great telling of the joke. You get a lot of discussing why it’s a great joke but what you get does not live up to it. This film could have been so much better than it is. And on a personal note it makes you lose a degree of respect for those who you felt to be part of the comedic intelligentsia.
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on 19 May 2006
I bought this DVD after listening to the Penn Jilette podcast, it sounded great. It's not. I wanted to find it funny, and I wanted to hear the evolution of this underground joke amongst comedians, the only joke is that a couple of Americans now have my money.

I heard Penn Jilette talking about it on his radio show saying how some people don't get it, and it's a documentary about the joke, and it's not supposed to be a laugh a minute comedy. Trouble is it's neither. You get about 2 minutes of history spread throughout the film in 5 second bursts, and that's the interesting bit over. Beyond that it's just comedians being unfunny, I'm sure they are very funny and big stars in America but it doesn't translate to the UK. You see a bunch of seemingly unfunny people telling an unfunny joke and you can't help thinking "what was the point?"

There are funny moments; Eddie izzard steals the show with 30 seconds on how he doesn't know the joke, thus making him the coolest and funniest comedian in the whole film.

The joke isn't even offensive once you get the idea, it seems that the comedians lose all ability to really tell a joke well, there's no structure, no surprise no twists and nothing funny beyond `here's a list of sexual acts which are done by people who are related to each other, and a dog....if it looks like no one is laughing' which we weren't.

You then get a few of them telling you that they did an hour long version once and everyone was cracking up....great, for those who were there, but you've just wasted another minute of my life I can never get back.

I have to point out that I wasn't offended by this at all. The endless hyping about how offensive this film is has ruined it, because it's not. The graphic images are described so poorly that they don't shock, you just feel sorry for whoever's telling the joke if that's the best they can come up with. Once you understand the premise of the film and think you're in for some real underground extreme comedy and an insight into the evolution of this thing called the aristocrats, there's no point watching it because it doesn't deliver. If you have no idea what to expect, you'll laugh and be shocked for 10 minutes, and then you'll get bored, very, very bored.

Maybe it's because I live in England that I found this film so bad. An evening of jokes in the pub with your mates will have everyone cringing and feeling ill with laughter. This film will not. We have comedians who are sexist and racist and who use every swear word in existence. This is just tame and dull by UK standards.

The best thing about this film is I now have a new insult. If someone is telling me a really dull or unfunny story that they think is hilarious, and goes on for far, far too long, I can wait until they've finished and say "The Aristocrats!"
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on 11 September 2007
This film is a masterclass in how to take a joke that isn't funny and ask lots of people who think they are funny to tell it , over and over and over and over and over and over again . It is so childish , with each person trying to be more crude than the other.
Some people have given this film 5 stars , which I think is funnier than the film itself .
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on 31 May 2006
Another reviewer wrote this

"You will either love this film so much that you will talk about nothing else for days or hate it with a burning inhuman passion."

If it's true, I definitely fall into the second crowd. You know when a group of people keep repeating an in-joke that's not funny to anyone outside the group? This is that situation on film. It's barely a joke, and the interviewees admit that. I was glad when I had to leave the room to answer the telephone and not come back.

The film feels so pointless that it's like someone's pulling a practical joke on you by recommending it; you watch it for far too long just to see if there's a point. I recommend you don't waste your time.
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on 26 October 2006
If you like comedy in general, if you respect and/or admire any of the comedians listed as being in this film please do not even think about watching this film.

The joke is unfunny. Its not sick un-funny or naughty un-funny, its just a very bad joke. Maybe 20, 30 or more years ago the shock value had people laughing in relief at the end, but to be honest it is this modern era just a poor joke.

I am amazed that so many greats of the comedy circuit got involved in this poor film. Hank Azaria, Eddie Izzard, Micheal McKean, Harry Shearer, Robin Williams, Billy Connelly, in fact just about anyone you care to mention recite their own version of the joke and not one of these greats could make it funny.

The only person who even began to try to make the joke funny was the mime artist and that my friends is a sad, sad thing to have to admit.
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on 22 June 2006
I've heard it said that good comedy sometimes makes you feel a little uncomfortable, ill-at-ease. Maybe that's what the makers of this film intended - but they missed by a mile.

Other reviewers have said that you'll either love or hate this film - and I fall firmly into the latter category. Scatalogical humour is the bedrock of much comedy - OK there. However, when the territory moves onto child abuse, bestiality, incest etc - which this film does - then the line will have been crossed for most people.

Even if you consider yourself open-minded (which I do) - then think carefully before renting (or even worse, buying) this DVD.
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on 7 August 2008
HOW can a joke, which if practiced and lived, would put you behind bars or on the electric chair easily, survive that long? It is truly frightening to hear some comic veterans and loveable charactes talk about atrocities, incest, rape, murder and god-knows-what horrors else. HOW can a sane mind invent insane stuff like this? Are they really so far out of their minds that they have imaginations this wild and absurd? This "joke" is an insult to all jokes. It is not funny, never was an never will be to a broader audience. It will always stay in it's niche. Only sick and twisted people can tell this joke. Even sicker people will laugh about it. Let's hope that god has mercy!
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