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The Show of Shows

HD   Unrated

Benedikt Erlingsson

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About the Movie

This film tells the story of itinerant circus performers, cabaret acts and vaudeville and fairground attractions. In this film, rarities and never-before seen footage of fairgrounds, circus entertainment, freak shows, variety performances, music hall and seaside entertainment are chronicled from the 19th and 20th century. We will see early shows that wowed the world and home movies of some of the greatest circus families. Director Benedikt Erlingsson takes us back to the days when the most outlandish, skillful and breathtaking acts traveled the world. This rich visual archive has been created with exclusive access to The University of Sheffield’s National Fairground Archive and is accompanied by an epic new score by Georg Holm and Orri Páll Dýrason of Sigur Rós, in collaboration with Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson and Kjartan Dagur Holm.


Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 11
  • Fresh: 11
  • Rotten: 0
  • Average Rating: 6.7/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: A cinematic delight that uses archival footage to showcase the appeal as well as the unease of more than a century of circus and carnival acts. – Jay Weissberg, Variety, Jan 17, 2016

Fresh: You want to love The Show of Shows, a wordless archive documentary... And certainly, for the first 30 minutes at least, the director Benedikt Erlingsson creates a beguiling and eerie atmosphere. – Kevin Maher, Times (UK), Dec 3, 2015

Fresh: The anonymous performers from so long ago show both bravery and, often, startling balletic grace. It's very eerie to watch. Many of the routines involving animals and humans alike are based around cruelty, humiliation and extreme danger. – Geoffrey Macnab, Independent (UK), Dec 3, 2015

Fresh: It has the feel of a remembered dream. – Peter Bradshaw, Guardian, Dec 3, 2015

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

Wtf was this

How this terrible excuse for a movie had a 100% on rotten tomatoes I'll never know. It's old clips of some circus acts from many years ago. There is no sound except for the bad music they play in the background. The bits and pieces of the acts they show aren't very appealing. I can't think of one positive about this movie except thank God it wasn't longer.

The Show of Shows
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  • $14.99
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Released: 2017

Customer Ratings

We have not received enough ratings to display an average for this movie.

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