The Devil and Daniel Johnston

2005 Documentary

A decade after wowing critics with his debut feature Half Japanese: The Band That Would Be King, director Jeff Feuerzeig finally delivered his sophomore effort -- a documentary about the life and music of singer/songwriter Daniel Johnston. Using archived film clips and recordings with newly shot footage and interviews, the film paints a detailed and honest picture of the tortured genius. The Devil and Daniel Johnston premiered at the 2005 Sundance Film Festival.

Director: Jeff Feuerzeig


  • A one-of-a-kind cinematic experience. This musician may not be a genius along the lines of Brain Wilson, as Feuerzeig claims, but Johnston has a knack for revealing innermost thoughts in an offhand way that is eerie and uncanny.

    - The San Francisco Chronicle

    27 April 2013

  • Whatever one's opinion of Johnston's art, this is documentary filmmaking at its finest.

    Kirk Honeycutt - The Hollywood Reporter

    27 April 2013

  • No wonder Kurt Cobain was a fan. But it's the way Feuerzeig walks with him on the line between creativity and madness that digs this haunting and hypnotic film into your memory.

    Peter Travers - Rolling Stone

    27 April 2013

  • With humor, honesty and awe, Feuerzeig's portrait may love Daniel Johnston, but it won't give his parents much hope.

    Allison Benedikt - The Chicago Tribune

    27 April 2013

  • The casual listener is easily put off, but by the end of the film, even a newcomer can see the magic that made fans of Kurt Cobain and Sonic Youth and led the estimable Yo La Tengo, Pearl Jam and Wilco to cover Johnston's remarkable body of work.

    Ken Fox - TV Guide

    27 April 2013


  • Jeff Feuerzeig

    NatFilm Festival (2005)

  • Documentary

    Sundance Film Festival (2005)