We gave it an A
A lot of critics called Terry Zwigoff’s squirmy documentary on the life, times, and dysfunctional family of underground cartoonist Robert Crumb the best film of 1995. They’re not necessarily wrong, but Crumb does go a little too far in portraying the artist as a neurotic, hypersexed bad boy, as opposed to the artist as an artist. That means Fritz the Cat and even more scabrous erotica are played up, while Crumb’s comic-book biographies of blues musicians and other subtle, stunning works are virtually ignored. Still, there’s no denying the freak-show pathos of the Crumb family — in particular, the tragedy of older brother Charles, who comes off as comix’ answer to Brian Wilson. Crumb is essential viewing, but for balance you might also want to rent Ron Mann’s Comic Book Confidential, which places this groundbreaking genius in perspective.