Believe: The Eddie Izzard Story

DVD Reviews | Apr 6th, 2010

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Starring: Eddie Izzard
Directed By: Sarah Townsend
Studio: Salient Media
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Eddie Izzard’s style of comedy isn’t for everybody, but you have to admit the guy has a rare talent of being funny, having great improvisation skills and is quite the actor! I’m always on the fence with his stand-up, sometimes I like it and sometimes I don’t. But what I really wanted to see was this documentary about Eddie. I think if you’re a fan, you won’t be disappointed.

Believe is the story of comedian and actor Eddie Izzard. He’s on the verge of putting on his comeback tour, so he dives into his own life for material. You get a glimpse of how Eddie operates backstage and how much work goes into bringing laughter to his audiences. The cameras are constantly rolling, and you see how tough comedy can be on Eddie sometimes (Especially in France..woof!). But he puts his chin up and continues on. That’s pretty much what this documentary is about. You get to find out how Eddie was as a child, what it was like growing up in Northern Ireland and in England. You find out how and when he started dressing up in women’s clothing and developing a specific niche of comedy. Plus you see him talk about his parents and how difficult it was losing his mother at a young age. You also get to see some never before footage of Eddie in his school days, and as a street performer.

I didn’t know if I would end up liking Believe or not, but I ended up liking it a lot! It was nice to see behind the scenes look at how Eddie prepares his stand-up act, seeing him mess up his lines during workshops…things like that. I can’t see myself being in Eddie’s shoes, err I mean heels and performing that stand-up act every night. It’s a lot of material to remember, and to be able to perform it in a funny way takes tremendous skill. You find out in this documentary that Eddie had that skill very early on, and he wanted to be an actor at a young age as well.

It was fun to see the street performer video and his earlier material because he’s not in drag. He’s actually in some hideous clothes. I can totally picture him doing the street performing stuff and riding a unicycle like he did. As much as people scoff at street performers like that, it definitely takes some balls to do performances like that out in the streets. It was interesting to discover when he started dressing up in women’s clothing, and I particularly liked hearing how Eddie grew up. I think once you get to know a celebrity and how they grew up and what they went through, you respect them a lot more.

I recommend watching Believe if you ever enjoyed one of Eddie Izzard’s performances. Seeing the backstage scenes in this documentary and getting to know more about Eddie Izzard; I definitely appreciate Eddie Izzard’s comedy a lot more now.

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Bottom Line: A good documentary about comedian/actor Eddie Izzard
Rating: NR
Running Time: 103 mins
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