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Based on 8 Reviews
critic reviews (8)
fan reviews ( )
  • 75
    Wesley Morris Boston Globe

    Wattstax is a disorienting and ironic moviegoing experience. It's a film about the curative powers of rhythm-and-blues music that sets out to frustrate your sense of rhythm in its insistence on the blues. show more

  • 70
    TV Guide

    The film is saved by the raw power of the performances, and especially, Richard Pryor's bitterly funny observations. show more

  • 100
    Seattle Post-Intelligencer

    Commentary from shockingly outspoken Watts residents on topics ranging from revolution to infidelity are a vital part of the documentary. show more

  • 75
    Owen Gleiberman Entertainment Weekly

    I wish I could say that Wattstax was an ecstatic soul celebration, but most of the performances, while enjoyable, fall short of memorable. show more

  • 90
    Desson Thomson Washington Post

    The result is a time capsule par excellence...This is the best of times and the worst of times, African American style. show more

  • 90
    Ann Hornaday Washington Post

    A candid, colorful and deeply meaningful sociocultural time capsule, one that captured the black community at the height of its political energy and optimism. show more

  • 80
    Keith Phipps The A.V. Club

    Now an invaluable time capsule, the film has to transcend its own conceptual messiness. show more

  • 70
    Laura Sinagra Village Voice

    Not only documents the soul-titan concert held at L.A. Coliseum seven years after Watts burned, but illuminates the rue and kinesis of a city in full Black Power flower. show more

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