Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 13
  2. Negative: 1 out of 13
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  1. Reviewed by: Gary Goldstein
    Jan 20, 2012
    A terrifically entertaining, smartly constructed trip down memory lane with one of the American stage's most legendary troupers.
  2. Reviewed by: Elizabeth Weitzman
    Feb 2, 2012
    Such a unique personality really deserves a more interesting tribute, but it's so nice to see this one-of-a-kind nonagenarian still going strong.
  3. Reviewed by: Rex Reed
    Jan 31, 2012
    Flawed but bittersweet and enjoyable, this film may be the final chapter in a colorful and illustrious life.
  4. Reviewed by: Lou Lumenick
    Feb 3, 2012
    There's little sense of the Carol Channing beneath the overdone makeup - if there is one.
  5. Reviewed by: Bob Mondello
    Jan 24, 2012
    The lady was - and remains - a pro, still glowin', crowin', goin' strong.
  6. Reviewed by: Leba Hertz
    Feb 2, 2012
    Don't expect an in-depth study or exposé in Carol Channing: Larger Than Life. But director Dori Berinstein does capture the essence of Carol as one of those creatures of the theater that when you see her onstage, you know you've seen something special.
  7. Reviewed by: Bill Weber
    Jan 19, 2012
    A bubbly 90-year-old mascot from the golden days of the American musical, this doc's subject is certainly larger than the conventional testimonial treatment she's given.
  8. Reviewed by: Alison Willmore
    Jan 18, 2012
    Larger Than Life provides a look back at a time of show business and stardom that no longer exists.
  9. Reviewed by: Stephen Farber
    Jan 17, 2012
    Dori Berinstein's tender but sharp portrait finds a lot of depths in the woman whom many see as a camp figure.
  10. Reviewed by: Stephen Holden
    Feb 2, 2012
    A preternatural self-confidence and buoyancy infuse every syllable out of Ms. Channing's mouth in this entertaining film.
  11. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Jan 31, 2012
    There's not much beyond all the fawning, but the effusively talented Channing more than deserves the gush.
  12. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    Jan 17, 2012
    A celebration and a lament -- a celebration of Channing's seven decades as musical comedy star, and a lament that there's really no one like her anymore.
  13. Reviewed by: Melissa Anderson
    Jan 31, 2012
    Dori Berinstein's desultory, fawning profile of the nonagenarian performer devotes many of its padded 88 minutes to Channing's greatest success, playing the title yenta in "Hello, Dolly!"
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User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Jan 23, 2012
    Though gushing with an unwanted of recommendations typical to most showbiz bio-docs, Mary Channing: Bigger Than Life goes well when theThough gushing with an unwanted of recommendations typical to most showbiz bio-docs, Mary Channing: Bigger Than Life goes well when the 90-year-old trouper, now a fizzy pet from the far away fantastic periods of National musical technology humor, reminisces, shills, and dances (gingerly) for charitable organisation. Having outlasted the era of the star-centric Broadway present, she revolves doubtlessly well-honed stories about her star-struck girlhood in San Francisco, greens periods in hotel reveals and revues, and developing her "dumb as a fox" personality through trademark jobs in Males Desire Blondes and Hello, Dolly! Channing, even when obliging autograph hunters, as well tasks the element of always-on entertainer and guileless girlfriend that only a few precious symbols have coordinated up. (Dolly Parton comes to thoughts, as does, in a TV video where Channing banters ditzily with Henry Uses up, Burns's lover Gracie Allen.) Relaxing for manager Dori Berinstein's digicam with 4th man Harry Kullijian, whose gathering with his junior-high break after 70 decades apart is the normal heart-tugger of this doc, Mary controls a fantastic matinee-ready take when Harry shrugs, "I considered she was deceased."
    Alas, Bigger Than Daily normal life is too little to contain Channing's legacy; aside from an starting montage which goes chronologically backwards through six generations of the celebrity performing "Diamonds Are a Ladies Best Companion," Berinstein's blemishes and elisions are continually doubtful. Associates and collaborators like Marge Champ and the overdue Nancy Garrett are entitled to their talking-head time, but coming to a roundtable of growing older refrain young children three periods to perform Channing's praises? Crediting the inclusion of "Before the Celebration Moves By" by musician Jerry Herman with maintaining Hello, Dolly!, but never allowing more than three collections of it play? This profile's replicate step of really like for its topic simply actually leaves it to Mary to take responsibility for showing priority for the theatre over her son ("That's wrongâ
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