Universal acclaim - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 30
  2. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. 75
    As for the movie, I've seen better comedy films and better concert films. It noodles around too much and gets distracted from the music. Michel Gondry, who directed, makes good fiction films but is not an instinctive documentarian and forgets that even a fly on the wall should occasionally find some peanut butter. As the record of a state of mind, however, the film is uncanny.
  2. The enthralling spirit of Dave Chappelle's Block Party, its mood of exuberant democracy, extends to every rap and soul performance in the film.
  3. Most fun of all, however, is basking in Chappelle's ability to be effortlessly funny. Whether he's making believe he's a pimp in a Dayton clothing store or charming little kids in the Bed-Stuy day-care center that was concert headquarters, his personality infuses the film with infectious good feelings.
  4. The comedian has had his ups and downs recently, but the film is pure up, a wonderfully genial and inclusive record -- not that the music is devoid of anger or social protest -- of a day-long, freestyle show.
  5. 100
    The movie they've assembled is in the vein of 1973's "Wattstax," but it's much more than a concert documentary. It's a jubilant, civic-minded lollapalooza.
  6. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    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.
  7. Reviewed by: Ken Fox
    The film's highlights are far and away the musical performances.
  8. There is a clear festive buzz, as attendees laugh, bob and listen to Chappelle's impish, inventive comedy, and some of the best music hip-hop has to offer.
  9. Mr. Chappelle looks and sounds alternately ebullient and weary. It was directed by Michel Gondry, the madcap genius behind "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind," but in its tone and vibe feels like Mr. Chappelle's all the way.
  10. 70
    It's a hell of a show, though none of the artists gets more than a single number, and most of Chappelle's comic interludes are half-baked. Funnier and more engaging are his perambulations around the neighborhood.
  11. 90
    At a time when our country feels divided to the point of cracking, Dave Chappelle's Block Party feels like a salve. It's a defiant act of optimistic patriotism.
  12. No background material is going to help the viewer who isn't already aware of why a Fugees reunion is such a cool thing to witness, but it's impossible not to get caught up in this party's good vibe.
  13. The freestyle approach is an apt fit with the freestyle, spontaneous comedy, as both the playful director and affable star capture moments on the fly.
  14. 83
    Block Party is largely a giant love-fest, which is fitting given the staggering amount of simpatico musical and comic talent on display, though some conflict surfaces nevertheless.
  15. 83
    Some of the movie's sunniest moments arrive as Chappelle ambles through Ohio. He's an observational comic with a drawling syntax that's almost as sly as Mark Twain's.
  16. Once in a great while there's a movie that's so funny, infectious and welcoming - a movie that makes you feel so good about America and the people in it - you just want to climb inside the screen and live there. That's the case with Dave Chappelle's Block Party - part comedy, part concert film, part avant-garde experiment, and all of it a joy.
  17. 75
    The result is this infectious documentary, which combines some inspired musical performances with Chappelle's perpetually hilarious commentary.
  18. 80
    Results in moments of real beauty that make you grateful Chappelle chose an aesthete for directing chores. And yet, in terms of content, the film doesn't quite reach the bar set by its historic predecessor (Wattstax).
  19. Reviewed by: Joe Leydon
    A heady spirit of spontaneity permeates the proceedings, suggesting the entire pic, much like the concert it documents, was conceived, planned and completed in a single burst of creative enthusiasm.
  20. A return to rowdy form for Chappelle.
  21. It's the best kind of complaint. You can see why the $50 million man refers to something he gave away as "the best single day of my career."
  22. The word "community" has become a cliche, but this party, both backstage and before the crowd, illustrates a specific sense of cultural community and the singular bliss of standing on a city street in late-summer rain for a once-in-a-lifetime concert.
  23. The film, from its deadpan start to its languorous finish, provides the most joyous moviegoing experience in years.
  24. 80
    A wholly entertaining film, both as a musical experience and in seeing a fairly relaxed Dave Chappelle doing some of what he does best.
  25. The film doesn't shy away from the political side of hip-hop.
  26. Ain't nothin' but a party, y'all.
  27. An uplifting, funny and engaging star-studded affair.
  28. Reviewed by: Kyle Smith
    Strictly for fans of the musical acts and those who think everything Chappelle does is genius.
  29. Reviewed by: Helen O'Hara
    What gives the film its layers is the refusal to cut straight to the music.
  30. Reviewed by: Ed Halter
    This picture remains faithful to the underlying affability of both Chappelle and Gondry, orchestrating a feel-good homestyle vibe that, while peppered with moments of sly political commentary, never harshes its own, slightly bittersweet mellow.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 50 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 29
  2. Negative: 4 out of 29
  1. AK
    Sep 4, 2007
    The humor was really that great, but I really enjoyed the overall movie. The entire concept of a free, surprise concert that doesn't have some corporate spin is pretty cool. Instead, the 'spin' was a scheme to perpetrate random acts of kindness on regular people and develop some fellowship among famous people. And get it on film, which is heartwarming and impressive. Kind of interesting to hear from who were annoyed that it featured hip-hop music. Maybe the long list of hip-hop acts with pictures of the people involved on the movie poster / DVD cover might have been a clue. Further, if you don't like Dave Chappelle and you completely hate hip-hop, perhaps you can put your noodle together and steer clear of a movie named "Dave Chappelle's Block Party." Full Review »
  2. Eldon
    Jun 25, 2006
    Uh, yeah... no... it's not stand up comedy. Get over your whining you babies. If a movie has the power to "take" something from your life, you don't have much of one to begin with. And that is, in part, what this movie is about... life. It's rare that a movie can capture the passion and fire of a community, of humanity in it's many faces. And then to express it with such artistry?! The "joke" here is on those who just don't get it. Full Review »
  3. Nov 1, 2013
    Different from most motion pictures, this movie gave it's audience an unique sense of exuberant life with it's fantastic independent spirit. It had a cool premise, to bring the people of Brooklyn a surprise concert of many extremely talented performers (Kanye West, Mos Def, The Roots) as a random act of kindness. This movie shows us what a "Community" really is in other people's eyes. This film is definitely worth a look as it is one of my favorites, to have a unique social theme and sprinkle it with some humor. Inspirational film that is actually quite heart-warming. MUST SEE Full Review »