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Past Films

Won't You Be My Neighbor?

  • Director: Morgan Neville
  • Genre(s): Biography, Documentary
  • Rating: PG-13
  • Running Time: 94 min.

Won’t You Be My Neighbor? takes an intimate look at America’s favorite neighbor: Mister Fred Rogers. A portrait of a man whom we all think we know, this emotional and moving film takes us beyond the zip-up cardigans and the land of make-believe, and into the heart of a creative genius who inspired generations of children with compassion and limitless imagination.

"A film that so deeply embodies its subject that it almost transcends it."
- Oliver Jones, New York Observer
"On paper, all that low-key positivity ought to be tricky material for a documentary filmmaker. But watching "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" was a profoundly emotional experience."
- Steve Pond, TheWrap
"Neville’s fantastic archival footage reveals the man through his work — or at least, it reveals his philosophies, if not the childhood memories that gave Rogers the ability to understand a four-year-old’s brain, almost as if he still carried his in his cardigan pocket. "
- Amy Nicholson, Variety
"This beautiful film celebrates a deeply good man with a great gift for repairing."
- Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal
"The documentary is ultimately bittersweet, because it highlights just how alien Fred Rogers' philosophy of television has become today. But the film also functions as a gentle rallying cry."
- Lara Zarum, Village Voice
"Mister Rogers made it his mission to give kids self-esteem. His neighborhood made the world a better place, and Won't You Be My Neighbor provides us a rewarding return visit."
- Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News
"It's a zenlike break from ugly divisions and social-media posturing. It's an hour-and-a-half of peace, a movie that exists beyond cynicism and irony."
- Bill Goodykoontz, Arizona Republic
"This movie is at once unapologetically admiring and intellectually rigorous."
- A.O. Scott, New York Times
"We tend to develop a thick, cold skin of cynicism over the years. Won't You Be My Neighbor? skillfully peels that away, so viewers can remember one of Mister Rogers' most important lessons: that it's okay to feel."
- Noel Murray, AV Club
"Soothing TV host Fred Rogers was quietly radical at shaping generations of American children. And this funny, touching and vital doc from Oscar winner Morgan Neville shows why the late Mr. Rogers remains timely and timeless."
- Peter Travers, Rolling Stone
"In Won’t You Be My Neighbor, the touching and insightful survey of Rogers’ decades-spanning career from Oscar-winning director Morgan Neville (“Twenty Feet From Stardom”), the filmmaker highlights Rogers’ capacity to explore complex themes through the lens of a kid’s program that took a dead-serious approach to his young viewers’ needs. "
- Eric Kohn, Indiewire