Those incandescent qualities and inherent likability are evident in the nicely curated clips presented, including signature characters like Lisa Loopner and Rosanne Rosannadanna.
They also shine through, though, during the material about Radner’s personal life — including her ruminations about the consequences of fame (“Being famous is almost as bad for dating as being funny”), her whirlwind romance with Gene Wilder and finally grappling with her diagnosis of ovarian cancer.
In a genuinely touching moment, Radner is shown guest starring on “It’s Garry Shandling’s Show” and discussing her illness, drawing laughs by casting glances directly at the camera, a bit of fourth-wall-breaking that was supposed to be the exclusive privilege of the program’s star.
Radner dealt with cancer with enviable grace — addressing those feelings in her book, “It’s Always Something,” an autobiography that was published the year she died in 1989.
For those who remember watching Radner during those halcyon days on “SNL,” or those whose memories are confined largely to clips, “Love, Gilda” is a lovingly rendered reminder that she was, indeed, something.
“Love, Gilda” opens theatrically in the U.S. on Sept. 21. CNN Films is part of CNN.