The Life of Reilly Poster

Release Date: November 9th, 2007

Not Yet Rated|1 hr 30 min

Plot Summary
Born in 1931 to an alcoholic father and a racist mother, Charles Nelson Reilly grows up in a dysfunctional environment. When he begins to pursue acting, his homosexuality causes him to lose many job opportunities, but Reilly becomes a resilient public figure with a thriving career. Achieving fame as a 1970s game show host and late-night talk show fixture, Reilly also works steadily as an actor, theater director and drama coach. In this monologue, he recounts his life story.

Director: Barry Poltermann , Frank Anderson

Genres: Documentary

Distributors: Reel Diva

Ratings & Reviews

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  • Director Barry Poltermann’s sweet little evocation of a show business career captures Reilly at “the twilight of an extraordinary life,” in Reilly’s words. show more

  • Despite his obvious infirmities, Reilly infuses his performance with a great deal of energy -- frequently shouting his lines for emphasis -- and, of course, perfect comic timing. It's fortunate that we have this filmed record -- directed by Barry Poltermann and Frank Anderson -- of a memorable solo performance by a true show business original. show more

  • If you think of Reilly as little more than a camp icon, you've got a lot to learn. show more

See all critic reviews on metacritic.com