Too Funny to Fail

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Too Funny to Fail:
The Life & Death of
The Dana Carvey Show
Directed byJosh Greenbaum
Produced by
Written byJosh Greenbaum
Music byJohn Piscitello
Edited byBilly McMillin
Delirio Films
Distributed byHulu
Release date
  • October 21, 2017 (2017-10-21)
Running time
95 minutes
CountryUnited States

Too Funny to Fail: The Life & Death of The Dana Carvey Show is an American documentary film that premiered on Hulu on October 21, 2017. Directed, written and produced by Josh Greenbaum, it explores the creation of The Dana Carvey Show, how its creative team was assembled, and how the show ultimately came to be cancelled.[1]


The documentary features interviews with:


Too Funny To Fail was met with a positive response from critics upon its premiere. On the review aggregation website Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds a 100% approval rating with an average rating of 7.5 out of 10 based on 18 reviews.[2]

In a positive review, The New York Times' Margaret Lyons praised the film saying, "As sweetheart hagiographies go, the doc is joyous and funny. No one seems bitter or cynical, and the movie is less an excavation and more just a sublime collection of hilarious people speaking thoughtfully about silly clips from 20 years ago."[3] In another favorable critique, NPR's David Bianculli commended the film saying, "Too Funny To Fail on its own terms is entertaining and enlightening from beginning to end."[4] In a further approving analysis, The New Yorker's Ian Crouch lauded the film's tone saying, "the documentary itself is a rare thing: a movie about comedy that is, itself, actually funny."[5] In a more mixed assessment, Uproxx's Steven Hyden criticized the structure of the film and its lack of interviews with key members of the show's crew saying, "Too Funny To Fail is a little too straightforward, dispensing the story in the conventional journalistic style of a 60 Minutes report. And the failure to land interviews with Louis C.K. and Charlie Kaufman — the former was a pivotal guiding force, the latter was a nebbish outlier on the writing staff who later applied his meta genius to meta-genius films — makes the documentary feel a little incomplete."[6]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Barton, Chris (October 20, 2017). "Hulu's 'Too Funny to Fail' looks at the legacy of the doomed 'Dana Carvey Show'". The Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 23, 2017.
  2. ^ "Too Funny To Fail (2017)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango Media. Retrieved March 7, 2018.
  3. ^ Lyons, Margaret (October 20, 2017). "Review: 'The Dana Carvey Show' Was Doomed. 'Too Funny to Fail' Explains Why". The New York Times. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  4. ^ Bianculli, David (October 19, 2017). "New Documentary Explores The Spectacular Failure Of 'The Dana Carvey Show'". NPR. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  5. ^ Crouch, Ian (October 23, 2017). "The Unfortunate Genius of "The Dana Carvey Show"". The New Yorker. Retrieved October 7, 2018.
  6. ^ Hyden, Steven (October 20, 2017). "'Too Funny To Fail' Spotlights The Weird Run of 'The Dana Carvey Show'". Uproxx. Retrieved October 7, 2018.

External links[edit]