Joan Rivers is not a likeable lady. She's a comedic mastermind, with brilliant timing and a cutting wit. Often hilarious and self-deprecating, she's also a classic over-sharer. But she is frequently mean, setting her sights on a target and cutting loose with a fury few people understand. A recent tirade against Lindsay Lohan actually had me feeling sorry for the young starlet, which is something I generally find hard to muster. Admittedly, Rivers has had a difficult life, as the suicide of her husband left her reeling. And honestly, it appears that the woman really, really dislikes herself. The documentary Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work makes this fairly apparent. Directors Ricki Stern and Annie Sundburg, who previously made a heart-wrenching film about the horrors in Darfur, manage to show all sides of its subject in this side-splitting movie about one of plastic surgery's most cautionary tales. But it doesn't quite go so far as to manipulate us into feeling sorry for the acerbic Rivers. It's a buzzworthy little piece of cinema that drops into the Modern Museum of Fort Worth, 3200 Darnell St., as part of the Magnolia at the Modern series. Showtimes are 6 and 8 p.m. Friday; 5 p.m. Saturday; and 1 and 4 p.m. Sunday. Tickets are $8.50. Visit themodern.org/magnolia for more information.
Fridays, 6 & 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 5 p.m.; Sundays, 2 & 4 p.m. Starts: July 30. Continues through Aug. 1, 2010