New York Times - 04/11/2006
"[A] tantalizing sketch-portrait of the artist amid an outpouring of hard beats and soul."
USA Today - 03/03/2006
"Besides being filled with Chappelle's hilarious sense of humor, the movie features life-affirming messages and great music by serious rap artists with political, socio-cultural and spiritual themes."
Rolling Stone - 06/15/2006
"A joyous, inclusive spirit defines director Michel Gondry and Dave Chappelle's road-trip/concert film..."
Premiere - 07/01/2006 3.5 stars out of 4 -- "The greatest American hip-hop has to offer convene to produce something monumentally joyful and entertaining and relatively egoless."
Total Film - 06/01/2006 4 stars out of 5 -- "Chappelle is the perfect host, effortlessly improvising before and between acts....You won't just wish you'd been there -- you'll feel like you really were."
Sight and Sound - 07/01/2006
"[I]t is something of a love letter to all things hip hop and New York....[T]he sheer enthusiasm of the musicians, often collaborating with each other spontaneously, lends the film a winning nostalgia..."
Entertainment Weekly - 12/29/2006
Included in Entertainment Weekly's "Top 10 Films Of The Year" -- "BLOCK PARTY weaves music, comedy, stars and audience members into a funky and delirious vaudeville."
Mojo - 02/01/2007
"[A]miable, electrifying....[The film] showcases the brightest lights of the hip hop and neo soul scenes..."
Between the sharp comedic mind of David Chappelle and the quirky brilliance of French director Michel Gondry (ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND), there's not a single bad moment to be found in this captivating concert documentary chronicling a massive block party that Chappelle threw in 2004 down in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. With acts like the Roots, Kanye West, Jill Scott, Mos Def, Erykah Badu, and a reunion of the Fugees, this will be an automatic favorite for the hip-hop/neo-soul crowd. In its perceptive, celebratory way, the film opens the VIP gates on hip-hop culture and invites everyone in for a funky good time. Gondry's fly-on-the wall camera approach recalls D.A. Pennebaker docs like DON'T LOOK BACK (1967) but the attitude is more laid back and genial; the stars, the band, the locals, the marching band Chappelle buses in from his Ohio hometown, all come together with a rare sense of charmed spontaneity--watching it becomes akin to participation. Chappelle is hilarious, whether handing out golden tickets to old ladies or reciting improv poetry to a bongo beat, and the music is just as good, with highlights being Lauryn Hill's heartbreaking "Killing Me Softly," and Kayne Wests's galvanizing "Jesus Walks." This BLOCK PARTY re-writes a host of rules about what a concert film can be, and it does it with enough love to spill out of the theater and into the neighborhood.
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