Stan works in drudgery at a slaughterhouse. His personal life is drab. Dissatisfaction and ennui keep him unresponsive to the needs of his adoring wife, and he must struggle against ... See full summary »
Henry G. Sanders,
A documentary that records the darkly humorous sequence of events leading up to a seance to manifest Big Edith Bouvier Beale and Little Edie Bouvier Beale so they can attend a celebration ... See full summary »
A young woman, Poppy, out for excitement in Shanghai, enters a gambling house owned by "Mother" Gin Sling, a dragon-lady who worked herself up from poverty to buy the casino. Sir Guy ... See full summary »
Documentary on the Friedmans, a seemingly typical, upper-middle-class Jewish family whose world is instantly transformed when the father and his youngest son are arrested and charged with shocking and horrible crimes.
The Maysles brothers pay visits to Edith Bouvier Beale, nearing 80, and her daughter Edie. Reclusive, the pair live with cats and raccoons in Grey Gardens, a crumbling mansion in East Hampton. Edith is dry and quick-witted - a singer, married but later separated, a member of high society. Edie is voluble, dresses - as she puts it - for combat in tight ensembles that include scarves wrapped around her head. There are hints that Edie came home 24 years before to be cared for rather than to care for her mother. The women address the camera, talking over each other, moving from the present to events years before. They're odd, with flinty affection for each other. Written by
I took this out arbitrarily from the library the other night, having no idea of the film's cult, influence, or that it is currently being staged as a musical.(!) Most of the comments here are on target, it's moving, funny, sad, and yes, a tad exploitive despite the best intentions of the filmmakers. The expanded Chriterion edition is a must for anyone who loved it when it came out.
I think you can also see in little Edie the fall of a class that sort of disappeared, you can hear it in old films of Jackie O too; people just don't talk like that anymore. I think as a documentary, it would have been interesting to get more information about how the home fell into disrepute, Old Edie at least still seems aware of what's going on to a certain degree; couldn't She see the once spectacular home disintegrating?
Yet the film's subject is the life the two women have constructed for themselves now, a real life Tennesse Williams one act. Well worth your time.
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