I find most of Gilbert Gottfried’s schtick irritating.

But the off-stage Gilbert is SO neurotically loveable! This contrast is what makes this doc awesome:

He’s like a cross between George Carlin (fearless on stage) and Larry David (in real life).

Thanks to JM McNab of Cracked for first pointing out the Gilbert documentary in his “The Best Behind-the-Scenes Comedy Documentaries”

Trailer for “Gilbert”

Watch “Gilbert”

You can stream “Gilbert” for free on:

…or stream it with subscription on Peacock at

You can also stream it for $$ ($1.99 to $3.99 last I checked) on AppleTV (the lowest at $1.99), Amazon, YouTube and Vudu Fandango

Check here for the latest streaming options:


  • My Rating: 96/100
  • IMDB Rating: 7.6/10
  • Rotten Tomatoes Ratings: 88/100 (Users); 95/100 (Critics)

Review of “Gilbert”

Release Date: April 20, 2017.

He’s a comedian known for brash, no-holds-barred humor.

Yet offstage, he’s a soft-spoken, penny-pinching family man.

“Gilbert,” directed by Neil Berkeley, pulls back the curtain on this enigmatic performer.

The Legend of Laughter

Gottfried’s career is a wild ride through the annals of American comedy.

Starting young in the rough-and-tumble clubs of New York City, Gilbert honed a style that’s unmistakably his own.

His voice—high-pitched, grating, instantly recognizable—became a trademark, both adored and mocked.

His humor, often walking the tightrope between the outrageous and the offensive.

This earned him a reputation as a fearless provocateur.

The doc takes us through the highs and lows of his career. Gilbert’s rise to fame included unforgettable roles such as the wisecracking parrot Iago in Disney’s “Aladdin.”

He also played the madcap accountant Sidney Bernstein in “Beverly Hills Cop II.”

His stint on “Saturday Night Live” in the 1980-81 season, although short-lived, was a stepping stone. It showcased his unique comedic style.

A Private Life Revealed

What makes this documentary a standout is its unflinching look at Gilbert’s personal life.

You meet his wife, Dara Kravitz, a vivacious, supportive partner who balances Gilbert’s eccentricities with grace and humor.

Their relationship is the heart of the film. It showcases a deep bond that thrives despite Gilbert’s quirks. Dara’s anecdotes are gems. They paint a picture of a man who is both exasperating and endearing.

Then there are their kids, Lily and Max. Watching Gilbert interact with his children is a revelation. The stark contrast between his stage persona and his role as a father is both touching and amusing. He’s cautious, loving, and surprisingly shy—a far cry from the brash comedian the world knows.

Penny-Pinching and Practical Jokes

One of the most surprising aspects of Gilbert’s personality is his frugality.

The doc doesn’t shy away from his penny-pinching habits. These habits are often played for laughs.

Gilbert insists on staying in cheap hotels, washing his underwear in hotel sinks, and traveling by bus to out-of-state gigs to save money.

This trait, while seemingly at odds with his larger-than-life public image, adds a layer of authenticity and humor to the doc.

His maniacal cheapskate tendencies, like hoarding free hotel soap, shampoo, deodorant, and toothpaste samples, which Dara has stashed in huge plastic bags, are potential signs of OCD. They highlight his eccentricity.

You gotta watch the scene in which they look under Gilbert’s bed at the hotel sh!t he hoards.

His love for practical jokes also gets ample screen time.

Whether he’s pranking his friends or indulging in playful banter with his family, these moments are pure gold. They reveal a man who finds joy in the small, often absurd moments of life.

Comedy’s Dark Side

“Gilbert” doesn’t shy away from the darker aspects of comedy. It delves into the pressures and criticisms that come with being a comedian who constantly pushes boundaries.

Gilbert’s infamous post-9/11 joke at the Friars Club roast, which nearly derailed his career, is discussed with candidness.

Following the audience’s “too soon” reaction, Gilbert responded by telling the infamous “Aristocrats” joke.

This joke is considered the dirtiest joke ever. This moment was pivotal.

It marked Gilbert’s shift from trying to keep his act clean to fully embracing blue material, especially after the release of the 2005 documentary “The Aristocrats.”

Gilbert’s resilience shines through despite the controversies, including his firing by Aflac for making jokes about the devastating tsunami in Japan.

His ability to laugh at himself and the world around him is infectious. It’s clear that his love for comedy is unwavering.

An Ode to a Unique Talent

What makes “Gilbert” truly special is its ability to balance humor with heart. Neil Berkeley crafts a narrative that’s as much about family and love as it is about comedy.

The film is peppered with interviews from fellow comedians and friends who provide insight into Gilbert’s unique place in the comedy landscape.

These include names like Whoopi Goldberg, Jay Leno, and Eddie Murphy.

Murphy remarks: “He (Gilbert) is on another level than anyone else in comedy…he’s a brilliant man.”

The documentary is rich with archival footage.

We see Gilbert’s early days as an avid yoga practitioner with a mustache, looking like a nerdier Carlos Santana.

We also see his more recent appearances.

He delivers his iconic lines on “The Tonight Show.” At various comedy festivals, his edgy humor continues to captivate audiences.

A particularly sweet scene features Gilbert and his 89-year-old friend Dick Van Dyke singing “Put on a Happy Face.”

The film also touches on Gilbert’s feelings of impersonating a human being and waking up in a dream each day as a husband and father.

This happens despite his seemingly normal home life.

Thanks for reading!

Rob Kelly, Chief Maniac, Daily Doc