Go look at Val Kilmer’s IMDb page. Just take a look at how many movies he’s made that are culturally relevant or just excellent. Sure, there are some stinkers, every actor (besides John Cazale) has their share of bad movies. VAL is a documentary that pieces together the life and times of Val Kilmer in more ways than one. We get a look at the professional, the artist, the family-man, and the actor.

Through it all we get a picture of Val Kilmer and some of his co-stars that you’ve never seen before. The documentary from Amazon Studios is directed by Ting Poo and Leo Scott. It stars Val Kilmer, his son Jack Kilmer, and family members of Kilmer. But is this documentary worth watching for people who might not necessarily be huge fans of Kilmer?

That’s a resounding yes for me. If you love film, if you love art, VAL is something you should watch.

A Deeply Personal Experience For The Audience And Kilmer

Watching this documentary makes you think. How could hardships like the ones that Val Kilmer has faced, affect me? It turns out, a lot. Through his career, especially in the 90’s, Kilmer was seen as a diva. He was hard to work with. Now we know why he had that reputation. He’s a perfectionist, he had circumstances in his life he was dealing with. I’m sure I wouldn’t handle finding out that I was getting divorced over the TV, well.

It starts with his early life and times with his brothers. Seeing some of their “home movies” they made was a nice treat. Going into this, I wasn’t expecting to be moved or learn this much about the personal life of Kilmer. I was fully expecting some fluff fest that only showed him in a positive light and nothing else. Instead, it goes through his demons. You see the wounds he’s carried for his entire life. Whether that’s from a marriage crumbling or his brother dying when he was young.

It’s a sign for all of us, that people out there might be fighting things that you don’t see fully. It’s not all doom and gloom however. There’s plenty of fun and interesting behind-the-scenes looks at movies Kilmer has made.

Seeing Another Side Of VAL

The behind the scenes footage of actors like: Sean Penn, Kevin Bacon, Kurt Russell, and Marlon Brando are all worth the price of admission. Whether it’s from Tombstone or The Island of Doctor Moreau, they’re all great looks into film sets. Following all of that, you have looks into what it means to be a celebrity as well. Add to that, a celebrity with a health issue like Kilmer’s. He can’t talk without pressing down on a hole in his throat due to treatment from cancer he had.

It’s fascinating to see how this person that is held to such a high regard by fans and people out there, is just as much of a human being as the rest of us. Signing autographs, speaking for hours on end, meeting people, it all takes a toll. So that side of the documentary might be my favorite up until the end.

Watch VAL, You’ll Enjoy It

Through it all, VAL is a look into the life of one of our finest actors ever. Love his movies or hate his movies, Val Kilmer is a fine actor. He’s classically trained, but he’s more than that, he’s a human being. At the heart of it, that’s what this documentary is about. It’s about being human and dealing with all the things that come with that.

So when you sit down to watch VAL, you might sit down for something and wind up finding a whole different experience.

It’s one that made me appreciate the many movies of Val Kilmer’s career, that much more.

VAL releases on Prime Video on August 6th, 2021.

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