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Crumb (1994)

Terry Zwigoff’s landmark film is an intimate documentary portrait of the underground comic artist Robert Crumb, whose unique drawing style and sexually and racially provocative subject matter made him a household name in popular American art in the late ’60s and early ’70s.

His obsessions with women’s backsides, toilet humour, black caricatures and incest are wildly over the top and calculated to offend. And they do. They also make us laugh (even if it’s nervous laughter).

Zwigoff candidly and colorfully delves into the details of Crumb’s incredible career and life, including his family of reclusive eccentrics, some of the most remarkable people you’ll ever see on-screen – One spends much of his time meditating on the streets of San Francisco. The other is a recluse, holed up at home with his mother as he battles clinical depression and madness.

At once a profound biographical portrait, a riotous examination of a man’s controversial art, and a devastating look at a troubled family, Crumb is a genuine American original.

Terry Zwigoff