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Fantastic Fungi

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Fantastic Fungi
Film poster
Directed byLouie Schwartzberg
Written byMark Monroe
Produced by
  • Lyn Davis Lear
  • Louie Schwartzberg
  • Elease Lui Stemp
Narrated byBrie Larson
Edited by
Music byAdam Peters
Moving Art
Release date
  • October 11, 2019 (2019-10-11) (United States)
Running time
80 minutes
CountryUnited States
Box office$1,672,211[1]

Fantastic Fungi is a 2019 American documentary film directed by Louie Schwartzberg.[2] The film combines time-lapse cinematography, CGI, and interviews in an overview of the biology, environmental roles, and various uses of fungi.[3] The film features interview segments with Paul Stamets and Michael Pollan, and is narrated by Brie Larson.


On review aggregator website Rotten Tomatoes, the film has a 100% approval rating based on 23 reviews, with an average ranking of 7.7/10. The site's critical consensus reads, "As visually dazzling as it is thought-provoking, Fantastic Fungi sets out to make audiences see mushrooms differently -- and brilliantly succeeds."[4] On Metacritic, the film has a score of 70 out of a 100 by 8 reviews, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[5]

Critics praised Schwartzberg's time-lapse cinematography. Some critics found the narration unnecessary.[6][7]

Josh Kupecki of The Austin Chronicle said "visual affectations aside, Fantastic Fungi is an engaging look at the scope of an organism that is so much more than a pizza topping or an ingredient in beef stroganoff".[8] Andrew Pulver of The Guardian wrote "With its spectacular footage of growth and decay and impassioned speeches about the magic of mushrooms, this documentary is a treat for the eye and ear".[9] Rex Reed of The New York Observer called the documentary "charming",[10] while John DeFore of The Hollywood Reporter called the film an "[e]ye-opening eye candy".[6]

According to Robert Abele of the Los Angeles Times "it edges a little too close to being a commercial, but that's a nitpick when the totality of Fantastic Fungi is so entertaining, informative and appealingly hopeful about the hard-working cure-all for our ailing world lying beneath our feet".[11]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Fantastic Fungi (2019)". The Numbers. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  2. ^ "Fantastic Fungi". AFI Silver Theatre and Cultural Center. U.S.: AFI Silver. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  3. ^ Catsoulis, Jeannette (October 10, 2019). "'Fantastic Fungi' Review: The Magic of Mushrooms". The New York Times. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  4. ^ "Fantastic Fungi (2019)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved October 10, 2021.
  5. ^ "Fantastic Fungi (2019)". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  6. ^ a b DeFore, John (October 8, 2019). "'Fantastic Fungi': Film Review". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  7. ^ Morgenstern, Joe (October 24, 2019). "'Fantastic Fungi' Review: Magic Mushrooms". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  8. ^ Kupecki, Josh (December 6, 2019). "Fantastic Fungi". The Austin Chronicle. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  9. ^ Pulver, Andrew (November 6, 2020). "Fantastic Fungi review – how mushrooms could save the world". The Guardian. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  10. ^ Reed, Rex (October 15, 2019). "Charming Documentary 'Fantastic Fungi' Explores the Miracle of Mushrooms". The New York Observer. Retrieved August 1, 2021.
  11. ^ Abele, Robert (October 24, 2019). "Review: Mushrooms are the new superheroes in documentary 'Fantastic Fungi'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved August 1, 2021.

External links[edit]