Mixed or average reviews - based on 13 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: After the suicide of Johnny Cash's former manager, Saul Holiff, his estranged son, Jonathon, returns home. There, Jonathon learns from his mother that his father's personal records exist in storage. As Jonathon searches through them, he discovers much about his father's life of deferred dreams in London, Ontario until he became the manager of Johnny Cash. From there, Jonathon learns of his father's hectic life managing the erratic country star with his personal demons and moods and how the material success came with a profound cost of its own for Saul. In doing so, Jonathon gets a new perspective of a father who had his problems that he never fully conquered himself. Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 4 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Reviewed by: Alan Scherstuhl
    Oct 2, 2012
    As Cash might say, it has the heart, and it has the blood, and by the time childhood chatter is played back again, feeling is soaked through it like the sweat in Cash's guitar strap.
  2. Reviewed by: Peter Rainer
    Sep 13, 2013
    You get a strong whiff of what it must have been like to be Johnny Cash, or his exasperated manager, from this film. It would make a good companion piece to “Walk the Line.”
  3. Reviewed by: Robert Abele
    Sep 5, 2013
    In the end, despite the clunky mix of narrative formats, My Father and the Man in Black makes for an illuminating alternate history of sorts to the Hollywoodized version of Cash's ascendancy in "Walk the Line."
  4. Reviewed by: Andrew Pulver
    Sep 4, 2013
    For Cash devotees who want a hitherto-hidden perspective on their man, though, this is invaluable viewing.
  5. Reviewed by: David Parkinson
    Sep 4, 2013
    Slightly jerry-built reconstructions detract from an intriguing film with a unique angle on the country legend.
  6. Reviewed by: Ronnie Scheib
    Sep 4, 2013
    Holiff Sr.’s extensive audio diaries and taped phone conversations with Cash give authentic voice to the film’s otherwise stodgy re-creations of this true odd couple’s stormy relationship.
  7. Reviewed by: Robbie Collin
    Aug 3, 2013
    Holiff assembled this memoir from his father’s papers and audio diary, although the portrait of Cash that emerges is that of a pill-popping religious nut, and there is next to no insight into his music or creative process.

See all 13 Critic Reviews