IMDb > Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus (2006)
Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus
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Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus (2006) More at IMDbPro »

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Fur: An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus -- Turning her back on her wealthy, established family, Diane Arbus (Kidman) falls in with Lionel Sweeney (Downey Jr.), an enigmatic mentor who introduces Arbus to the marginalized people who help her become one of the most revered photographers of the twent


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Release Date:
20 October 2006 (Italy) See more »
Turning her back on her wealthy, established family, Diane Arbus falls in love with Lionel Sweeney, an enigmatic mentor who introduces Arbus to the marginalized people who help her become one of the most revered photographers of the twentieth century. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
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Every picture tells a story. See more (96 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Nicole Kidman ... Diane Arbus

Robert Downey Jr. ... Lionel Sweeney

Ty Burrell ... Allan Arbus

Harris Yulin ... David Nemerov

Jane Alexander ... Gertrude Nemerov

Emmy Clarke ... Grace Arbus
Genevieve McCarthy ... Sophie Arbus

Boris McGiver ... Jack Henry

Marceline Hugot ... Tippa Henry
Mary Duffy ... Althea

Emily Bergl ... Allan's New Assistant
Lynn-Marie Stetson ... Fiona (Naked Girl) (as Lynn Marie Stetson)
Gwendolyn Bucci ... Dominatrix

Christina Rouner ... Lois

Matt Servitto ... Handsome Client
David Green ... Another Client
Sandriel Frank ... Fox Model

Krista Coyle ... Fashion Model

Joseph McKenna ... Bald Man
John C. Gallagher ... Carnival Talker

Courtney Taylor Burness ... Little Diane
Maureen Shannon ... Rose the Maid
David Perkins ... Man with Dominatrix
Eric Gingold ... Giant
José Rafael Arango ... Funeral Home Director (as Jose Rafael Arango)
George McGrath ... Transvestite
David Steinberg ... Singing Little Person (as David Joseph Steinberg)
Natalie Dix ... Abby
Kim Taggart ... Model Kate
Teddy Tilkin ... Hank
Jess Osuna ... Elevator Man
Laura Andrew ... Siamese Twin
Leesa Andrew ... Siamese Twin

Nalu Tripician ... Boy with Birthmark
Rachel Boynton
Marilyn Dobrin
Heather Corby
Janie Martinez
Scott Fishbein
Lisa Heywood
Todd Robbins

Rochelle Bostrom
Adriana Biasi
Armen Hovanesian
Hedi Albertson
Kevin Moore (as Kevin 'Peppermint' Moore)
James 'Tigger!' Ferguson
Blu Toth (as Blue Toth)
Anna Merkulova
Carina Wretman
Peter 'Demi Tasse' Loicono (as Peter Loicono 'Demi Tasse')
Carrie Navarro
Kimm R. Schwert ... Party Guest (as Kim Schwert)

M. Xavier O'Connor (as Xavier O'Connor)

Laine Rettmer ... Model
Emire Lena
Ben Sanders

Peggy Cafferty ... Ironing Board Model
Sammy Areizaga
Brian 'Hattie' Butterick

Amanda Congdon

Reza Garakani
Sean Allison
Lena S.
Maria Telesca
Bill Huntley
Marie Constanti
Jennifer Kusner
Victoria Meblina
Delirium Tremens
Lucy Walsh
rest of cast listed alphabetically:

Heidi Albertsen ... Model (uncredited)
Racheline Maltese ... Nudist (uncredited)

Nic Novicki ... Party Guy (uncredited)
Reyna Shaskan ... Voice (uncredited)

Ryan Shore ... String Trio, Violinist (uncredited)

Laura D. Williams ... Fashion Model (uncredited)

Directed by
Steven Shainberg 
Writing credits
Erin Cressida Wilson (written by)

Patricia Bosworth (book "Diane Arbus")

Produced by
Laura Bickford .... producer
Patricia Bosworth .... co-producer
Adam Brightman .... line producer
Gerry Robert Byrne .... co-producer
Alessandro Camon .... executive producer
Vincent Farrell .... co-producer (as Vincent D. Farrell III)
Andrew Fierberg .... producer
Bill Pohlad .... producer (as William Pohlad)
Edward R. Pressman .... executive producer
Michael Roban .... executive producer
Mary Jane Skalski .... co-producer
Bonnie Timmermann .... producer
Original Music by
Carter Burwell 
Cinematography by
Bill Pope (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Kristina Boden 
Keiko Deguchi 
Casting by
Ellen Parks 
Production Design by
Amy Danger 
Art Direction by
Nick Ralbovsky 
Set Decoration by
Carrie Stewart 
Costume Design by
Mark Bridges 
Makeup Department
Kate Biscoe .... special makeup effects artist: Robert Downey Jr.
Justin Ditter .... makeup effects crew: Stan Winston Studio (as Justin Gerard Ditter)
Robert Fama .... key hair stylist
Connie Grayson Criswell .... makeup effects crew: Stan Winston Studio (as Connie Criswell)
Gudrun Halt .... hair stylist (as Gudi Holt)
Wayne Herndon .... hair stylist: Ms. Kidman
Audrey Klein .... makeup effects crew: Stan Winston Studio
Todd Kleitsch .... special makeup effects artist: Robert Downey Jr.
Rachel Levieux .... makeup effects crew: Stan Winston Studio
Shane Mahan .... makeup effects supervisor: Stan Winston Studio
Robert McCann .... hair stylist: Ms. Kidman
Robert McCann .... makeup artist: Ms. Kidman
Evelyne Noraz .... assistant makeup artist
Kyra Panchenko .... makeup artist: Ms. Kidman
Jackie Payne .... additional hair stylist (as Jacqueline Payne)
Joe Pepe .... makeup effects crew: Stan Winston Studio
James Sarzotti .... key makeup artist
Juliet Silva .... makeup artist additional photography: Juliet Silva Yee
Dina Sliwak .... addititional makeup artist
Khanh Trance .... hair effects: Stan Winston Studio
Khanh Trance .... makeup effects crew: Stan Winston Studio (as Khanh Tran)
Kerry Warn .... hair designer: Ms. Kidman
Amanda Ross .... additional makeup artist (uncredited)
Production Management
Adam Brightman .... unit production manager
Gerry Robert Byrne .... post-production supervisor
Meryl Emmerton .... production supervisor
Philip Farha .... post-production supervisor
Paul Leonardo Jr. .... post-production supervisor (as Paul Leonardo)
Karen Lawler .... post-production supervisor (uncredited)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Eric Richard Lasko .... second second assistant director
Carl Lawrence Ludwig .... first assistant director
Linda Perkins .... second assistant director
Greg Saraceno .... assistant director: reshoots
Greg Saraceno .... second assistant director
Matthew Sirianni .... second second assistant director (as Matt Sirianni)
Art Department
Matthew Amenta .... shop production assistant (as Matthew C. Armenta)
James Bono .... set dresser
Russell Bullock .... camera scenic artist
Peter Bundrick .... construction foreman (as Pete Bundrick)
Fredrik Carlström .... photo project manager (as Frederick Carlstrom)
Gary Cergol .... art department coordinator
Len X. Clayton .... production designer: reshoots (as Len Clayton)
Dominick Cocuzzo .... construction grip
Pat Cocuzzo .... construction grip
Ben Conable .... graphic artist (as Benjamin Conable)
Maus Drechsler .... assistant property master (as Ana Katharina Drechsler)
William Egan .... construction grip
Joan Finley .... set dresser (as Joan Finlay)
Todd Fjelsted .... art director: second unit
Peter Gelfman .... property master
Jesse Gertsen .... on-set stand-by carpenter
Charles Gonzales .... scenic
Alex Gorodetsky .... charge scenic artist
W. Steven Graham .... assistant art director (as Steve Graham)
Tim Grimes .... assistant property master
Richard Hebrank .... construction coordinator
Jay Hendrickx .... scenic artist
John House .... construction grip
Christopher Hébel .... scenic artist (as Christopher Hebel)
Jeffrey Jirgal .... construction grip (as Jeff Jirgal)
Thomas Jirgal .... second construction grip (as Thomas 'Casey' Jirgal)
Mark Klien .... construction grip
Austin Lovell .... construction coordinator: second unit
Brick Mason .... storyboard artist
Robin McAllister .... assistant property master (as Robin Voth)
Nicolay Mikushkin .... scenic artist
Michael Miller .... key construction grip
Victor Morales .... scenic artist
Brendan O'Rourke .... shop production assistant
Joel Ossenfort .... scenic artist
Tricia Peck .... p.a.
Edward Pisoni .... assistant art director
J.B. Popplewell .... art department coordinator: second unit
Kristen Rajterowski .... art director: third unit
John Ralbovsky .... scenic artist (as John A. Ralbovsky)
Rich Rose .... construction grip
Daniel Rosenfeld .... scenic shopman
Adam Scher .... assistant art director
Ari David Schwartz .... on-set dresser (as Ari Schwartz)
Lee Shevett .... construction grip
Bruce Swanson .... set dresser
Dick Tice .... lead man
Tom Warren .... assistant art director
Bradley Weinrieb .... art department production assistant
Christopher Weiser .... scenic artist
Kevin Williams .... construction grip
Tomas Zeman .... art department production assistant
Jessica Panuccio .... set dresser (uncredited)
Sound Department
Julie Altus .... adr recordist
Coll Anderson .... sound re-recording mixer
Carlie Bergman .... adr recordist
David Boulton .... adr mixer
Brian Bowles .... sound mix assistant
Kam Chan .... supervising foley editor
Laura Civiello .... dialogue editor
Marko A. Costanzo .... foley artist
Chris Fielder .... transfer assistant
Eugene Gearty .... sound designer
Frank Graziadei .... boom operator
Ruth Hernandez .... adr editor
Harry Higgins .... sound re-recordist
Paul Hsu .... sound effects editor
Bobby Johanson .... adr mixer
Frank Kern .... foley editor
Marissa Littlefield .... supervising adr editor
Tommy Louie .... cable person
Tommy Louie .... second boom operator
Douglas Murray .... adr mixer
Tom Nelson .... sound mixer
Alex Raspa .... adr mixer: New York
Fred Rosenberg .... dialogue editor
Jac Rubenstein .... foley editor
Dean St. John .... adr mixer: Los Angeles
Chris Stangroom .... assistant adr recordist
Serge Stanley .... apprentice sound editor
Greg Steele .... adr mixer
Reilly Steele .... sound re-recording mixer
Sara Stern .... apprentice sound editor
Philip Stockton .... dialogue editor (as Phil Stockton)
Larry Wineland .... first assistant sound editor
Lila Yomtoob .... assistant adr editor
Greg Zimmerman .... adr recordist
Special Effects by
Jeff Brink .... special effects: tub & pool
J.C. Brotherhood .... special effects coordinator (as JC Brotherhood)
Damian Fisher .... mold maker
Chris Jordan .... special effects foreman
Kathy Kane-Macgowan .... key hair effects
Lindsay MacGowan .... effects coordinator: Stan Winston Studio
Visual Effects by
Sonya Akopyan .... art director: Look Effects Inc.
Adam Avitabile .... flame artist
Randall Balsmeyer .... visual effects supervisor: Big Film Design Inc. (as Randy Balsmeyer)
Myla Bareng .... data technician
Ella Boliver .... roto artist
Karen M. Boyle-Anastasio .... digital conformation (as Karen Boyle-Anastasio)
J. John Corbett .... digital compositor: Big Film Design Inc.
J. John Corbett .... visual effects designer: Big Film Design Inc.
Haven Cousins .... color correction and effects: Heavylight Inc.
Bruce Ferris .... imaging supervisor
Henrik Fett .... visual effects supervisor: Look Effects Inc. (as Henrik R. Fett)
Trey Freeman .... digital compositor: Technicolor Creative Services LA
Buddy Gheen .... visual effects
Doug Gibbs .... imaging supervisor
Scott Gregory .... digital film colorist
Chris Halstead .... digital compositor: Big Film Design
Joshua Jordan .... digital compositor: Technicolor Creative Services LA (as Joshua Charles Jordan III)
John Kelly .... digital restoration
Christopher Kutcka .... imaging supervisor (as Chris Kutcka)
Justin M. Lane .... visual effects producer: MassMarket (as Justin Lane)
Robert Luttrell .... film projection producer: Heavylight Inc.
Joseph C. Pepe .... conceptual artist: Stan Winston Studio
Joshua Pines .... visual effects color imaging research and development
Rebecca Ramsey .... visual effects producer: Look Effects Inc.
Fabio Sanchez .... dailies colorist
Jonathan Sims .... visual effects production assistant: Look Effects Inc.
Chris Staves .... Flame artist: MassMarket
Caoilfhionn Sweeney .... visual effects producer: Technicolor Creative Services LA
Joe Vitale .... junior Flame artist: MassMarket
Norman Douglass .... stunt double: Lionel
Cort Hessler .... stunt coordinator (as Cort Hessler III)
Todd Robbins .... stunts: swords
Shawnna Thibodeau .... stunt double: Diane
Camera and Electrical Department
Rico Omega Alston .... additional video assist operator (as Rico O. Alston)
Cesar Baptista .... grip: second unit
Keith Bunting .... dolly grip
Michael Cambria .... second assistant camera
Caesar S. Carnevale .... second assistant camera: "b" unit
Andrew Casey .... Steadicam operator (as Andrew W. Casey)
Andrew Casey .... camera operator (as Andrew W. Casey)
Marc Christie .... key grip: insert crew
Chris Drechsler .... electrician
Jeffrey Dutemple .... first assistant camera: "b" unit
Gene Engels .... gaffer
Steven Fierberg .... additional cinematographer
John Foster .... director of photography: "b" unit
Michael Gallart .... lighting console operator
Abbot Genser .... still photographer
Michael N. Green .... rigging electrician
Matthew Harman .... assistant camera
David Knox .... camera operator: water unit
Scott Koenigsberg .... additional camera loader
Gus Magalios .... best boy grip (as Constantine Gus Magalios)
John McAleer .... first assistant camera: water unit
Tim McAuliffe .... best boy
Frances 'Buddy' McBride .... rigging gaffer (as Buddy McBride)
John Milcetic .... shop electrician
Justin Panzanaro .... rigging grip
Billy Patsos .... key rigging grip (as Bill Patsos)
George Patsos .... key grip
Rocco Proscia .... rigging grip
Christopher Raymond .... second assistant camera: water unit (as Chris Raymond)
Sabatino Rea .... best boy rigging grip (as Sabatino 'Sonny' Rea)
Lewis Sadler .... electrician
Liz Sales .... second assistant camera: second unit
Daniel Salk .... video assist operator
Brian Stocklin .... electrician
Eric Swanek .... first assistant camera: "a" camera
Eric Swanek .... steadicam assistant
Kevin Tiesiera .... gaffer: insert unit
Joel Tishcoff .... stage rigging gaffer
Rebecca Venezia .... camera loader
Tim Wattez .... set lighting electrician: insert unit
Ryan Wong .... camera intern
Danny Woods .... rigging grip
Mike Yurich .... grip (as Michael Yurich)
Daniel Feighery .... assistant camera (uncredited)
Douglas Pellegrino .... additional camera (uncredited)
Ernest Yurich .... grip (uncredited)
Casting Department
Karen E. Etcoff .... extras casting (as Karen Etcoff)
Luis Garcia .... casting assistant
Amelia Rasche McCarthy .... casting associate (as Amelia Rasche)
Emily Reutlinger .... casting assistant
Bill Tripician .... extras casting associate
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Denise Andres .... additional costumer: Ms. Kidman
Susan Bakula .... costume shop supervisor
Ariel Bowman .... costume production assistant
Susan Carrano .... assistant costume designer
Danajean Cicerchi .... additional costumer
Trenee Clayton .... on-set costumer
Barbara Hause .... wardrobe supervisor (as Barbara J. Hause)
Jacqueline Jones .... wardrobe assistant
Mike Kudra .... consultant: fur
Fionnuala M. Lynch .... costumer: Ms. Kidman (as Fionnuala Lynch)
Diana Pappas .... costume production assistant
Jennifer Rogien .... costume assistant
Editorial Department
Jim Finn .... optical negative supervisor
Andy Gregory .... digital intermediate producer
Scott Gregory .... digital film colorist
Richard Haylock .... on-line effects editor
William Henry .... first assistant editor (as Bill Henry)
Andy Kaplan .... digital intermediate producer
Kelly Kendrick .... editing intern
Chris Molinaro .... post-production coordinator
Nick Olson .... post-production assistant
Fabio Sanchez .... colorist: dailies
Shelby Siegel .... additional assistant editor
Lance Spindler .... color timer
Aidan Stanford .... color timer
Joe Violante .... dailies advisor (as Joey Violante)
Matt Woo .... on-line effects editor
Christian Zak .... digital intermediate producer
Charles Herzfeld .... hd dailies advisor (uncredited)
Music Department
Carter Burwell .... conductor
Carter Burwell .... orchestrator
David Charles .... musician: percussion
Michael Farrow .... music scoring mixer
Tony Finno .... music preparation
Gordon Gottlieb .... musician: percussion
Jim Hynes .... musician: trumpet
Todd Kasow .... music editor
Soo Hyun Kwon .... musician: violin
Adriana Marinescu .... music copyist
William Mays .... musician: piano and celeste (as Bill Mays)
Emily Mitchell .... musician: harp
Eileen Moon .... musician: cello
Phil Myers .... musician: french horn
Richard O'Neill .... musician: viola
John Palatucci .... musician: bass
Sandra Park .... music contractor
Sandra Park .... musician: violin
Dean Parker .... assistant to composer
Joe Passaro .... musician: percussion
Shawn Pelton .... musician: drums
Robert Rinehart .... musician: viola
Roger Rosenberg .... musician: baritone sax
Beth Rosenblatt .... music supervisor (as Beth Amy Rosenblatt)
Andrew Snitzer .... musician: tenor sax (as Andy Snitzer)
Alan J. Stepansky .... musician: cello (as Alan Stepansky)
David Torn .... musician: guitar
Martin Wind .... musician: bass
Sharon Yamada .... musician: violin
Timmy Olmstead .... score recordist (uncredited)
Transportation Department
Rudy Arietta .... driver: set dressing
Michael Buonocore .... driver
Robert Collins .... driver: set decoration
William Curtin .... driver (as William E. Curtin Jr.)
Robert Featherstone .... driver helper: set dressing
Nick Grzan .... driver: Robert Downey Jr.
Edward Iacobelli .... transportation co-captain
John Lalor .... driver: Nicole Kidman
Frank Sanpietro .... driver (as Frank M. Sanpietro)
Doug Wright .... driver
Other crew
Bill Ahern .... key production assistant
Julia Alexander .... legal counsel: River Road Productions
Cynthia Allen .... photograph clearances
Matthew Amenta .... production assistant
Tara Andrus .... first assistant accountant
Adam Auslander .... stand-in: Robert Downey Jr.
Sophia Barricelli .... adr loop group
Steve Beauchamp .... adr loop group
Adam Bernard .... set production assistant (as Adam N. Bernard)
Leigh Anne Bowles .... assistant: Mr. Bickford
Steve Boyle .... post-production accountant
Frank Cattano .... location assistant
David Chambers .... location assistant
Wendy Cohen .... product placement
Kate Danson .... adr loop group
Leslee Dart .... publicist
Felicity Donarski .... accountant: River Road Productions
David Dreishpoon .... craft service
Jessica Ecklund .... adr loop group
Kelly Evans .... caterer
Joseph Fatale .... adr loop group
Kerin Ferallo .... production office coordinator
Rebecca Fulton .... additional script supervisor
Nicholas J. Giangiulio .... adr loop group
Andy Gilbert .... caterer
Andrew Goodman .... office production assistant
Mitchell Greenberg .... adr loop group (as Mitch Greenberg)
Tracey Grimes .... executive: Technicolor Creative Services
Joe Guest .... location assistant
Lauren Guilmartin .... set production assistant (as Lauren Kells Guilmartin)
Thalia Harithas .... additional set production assistant
Chad Hessler .... marine department
Steven Hora .... assistant: Ed Pressman and Alessandro Camon
Jonathan Hova .... adr loop group
Ray Iannicelli .... adr loop group
Sondra James .... loop group coordinator
Judy Jenson .... adr loop group
Hollis McConnell Jones .... lead stand-in: Nicole Kidman (as Hollis M. Jones)
Brian Kane .... production office intern
Sherman Kaplan .... immigration lawyer
Jeff Kay .... consultant: vintage photographs, Lens and Repro
Cami Kinahan .... legal counsel: River Road Productions
Christina D. King .... production secretary (as Christy King)
Francine Lecoultre .... mask designer
Angela C. Lee .... assistant production office coordinator
James D. Lee .... location manager
Thomas K. Lee .... set production assistant
Robert A. Levine .... unit publicist (as Rovert Levine)
Rosalind Lichter .... production legal
Brendan MacDevette .... production assistant
Randy Manion .... assistant location manager
Kathryn Markey .... adr loop group
Jolynn Martin .... assistant: Mr. Pohlad
Kate Maré .... dialect coach: Ms. Kidman
Paul Mastroianni .... set production assistant
Marcus Maurice .... adr loop group
David M. McGuire .... location assistant (as David McGuire)
Kelsey Miller .... production intern
Stephen Monas .... legal counsel: River Road Productions
Melissa Mugavero .... set production assistant
Patrick Murray .... set production assistant
Bobby Nieves .... caterer (as Bobby Nievez)
Julia Ryan Novack .... adr loop group
Sean Oliver .... adr loop group
Nicole Papincak .... legal counsel: River Road Productions
Ellen Parks .... acting coach: children
Derek Pastures .... parking coordinator
Wayne Petrucelli .... security: Ms. Kidman
Diego Pina .... craft service
Andee Radu .... set production assistant
Sarah Ramey .... assistant to producer
Max Reimarts .... financial officer: River Road Productions
Michael A. Rizzo .... office production assistant (as Michael Rizzo)
Christina I. Rodriguez .... production assistant
Jennifer Rogien .... assistant: Mr. Shainberg
Matt Rosen .... legal counsel: River Road Productions
Amy Russell .... rights clearances
Kris Schackman .... location assistant
Romy Schneider .... contract administrator: Picturehouse
Reyna Shaskan .... adr loop group
Luke Tomalin Sherman .... production intern
Loren Sklar .... set production assistant
Jeannine Sloane .... production intern
Eric J. Sonntag .... production assistant (as Eric Sonntag)
John Spady .... location scout
Missy Stertzbach .... tutor
Rose Stockton .... adr loop group
Julio Torres .... craft service
Mamta Trivedi .... assistant: Mr. Fierberg
Priti Trivedi .... additional set production assistant
Elizabeth Verghese .... production accountant
Steve Vincent .... assistant: Ms. Timmermann
Dan Walton .... payroll accountant (as D'Dan Walton)
Lindsay Wasserberger .... assistant: Mr. Shainberg
Annie Welles .... script supervisor
Aidan Williams .... development executive
Lawrence S. Yudess .... immigration lawyer
Christian Zak .... producer: Technicolor
Tasha Zamsky .... animal handler
Jared Cauliffe .... set production assistant (uncredited)
Jessica Plautz .... production intern (uncredited)
Daniel Villagomez .... credits administrator (uncredited)
Robert McCann .... in loving memory: Ms. Kidman's performance is dedicated to

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
Rated R for graphic nudity, some sexuality and language
122 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:

Did You Know?

Samantha Morton was originally cast as Diane Arbus.See more »
Revealing mistakes: Towards the end of the movie, Lionel is shown beginning to blow up the canvas raft. He later explains that it is for Diane when he takes his final swim. Someone suffering from such extremely low lung function that he will only live a few months would never be able to inflate a raft that size.See more »
Lionel Sweeney:[to Diane] Are you trying to seduce me?See more »
Whistle and FluteSee more »


What the heck is going on in this movie?
See more »
39 out of 49 people found the following review useful.
Every picture tells a story., 20 February 2008
Author: Graham Greene from United Kingdom

Any instance in which a filmmaker attempts to blend ideas of fact with fiction - especially when that particular fact is fairly well known and tied to an iconic historical figure - they're going to have problems in maintaining a connection with certain factions of their audience. Just look at some previous examples of this same stylistic device in other films; such as Dreamchild (1985) for instance, in which an elderly Alice Liddell reflects on her time spent with Lewis Carroll and his obsessive compulsion to nail her character to the very pages of his most celebrated work. Even more polarising was David Cronenberg's adaptation of the cult novel Naked Lunch (1991), in which elements of the author's life and works were blended together to create a torturous, darkly-comic and highly homo-erotic trek through the damaged psychological territory of a Burroughs-like bug exterminator. A similar approach was also used by director Steven Sodebergh and screenwriter Lem Dobbs with their coolly expressionistic merging of the fantastical and horrific writings of Kafka (1991), with the more mundane, everyday-like tedium of his real life and work.

Fur (2006), which makes its intentions clear with the subtitle "an imaginary portrait of Diane Arbus", takes on a similar approach to the films aforementioned; blending elements of personal fact and actual biographical detail with a story that is pure, fairy tale fabrication. Having watched the film just a few days ago, I browsed the Internet for previous reviews to get a sense of how other audiences had approached it. In doing so, I was quite shocked and surprised to see just how violently some viewers had reacted to the film; citing everything from the liberal approach of the film's script, the central performance from Nicole Kidman, and the fundamental message that seems implied by the film's very tender sense of emotional drama as reasons why this film was worthless or simply not good. This surprised me for two reasons, firstly; that these intelligent and well-versed viewers were unable to separate the elements of fact surrounding the real life Diane Arbus and her extraordinary body of work from the quite clearly fabricated depiction of grotesque beauty that the filmmakers create through the imagined relationship between our caricature of Diane and a character named Lionel; a mysterious former carnival performer. Secondly, it surprised me that these viewers felt that Arbus's life would be better served by a routine, by the books Hollywood biopic in which all the facts and back stories are simplified, and we end up with a very simple film about the triumph of the little guy against all odds.

Do people really want bland, cookie-cutter, connect the dots cinema; a struggle over adversary and all the usual nonsense that comes with those A-Z, biographical features, such as Walk the Line (2005) and Ray (2004)? Sadly, it would appear so. What happened to audiences craving imaginative, free-thinking cinema? Something that attempts to deconstruct a greater truth in an intelligent, imaginative and emotionally captivating way that is genuinely suited to the visual, metaphorical capabilities that cinema presents. For me, everything you would need to know about Arbus is here and everything you would need to know about her art is divulged in a number of interesting, highly imaginative visual quirks. You just have to scratch beneath the surface. Read between the lines and you'll see with this film the very psychological impulse and motivation to create something beautiful from the seemingly mundane; to capture that all too fleeting moment and preserve it on film forever. Fur, for me, took us inside the psychological world of Arbus, with none of the black and white moralising or textbook type tedium that often plagues this particular genre; but instead, showing us some of the potential ideas and imagined situations that came to instill her work with such a grotesque sense of beauty.

It has a long been said; "every picture tells a story". That's what this film is about. Anyone can read a book about the real life Arbus; but how on earth is that enriching the cinematic medium? I personally don't look to cinema to find something that is readily available to me at my local library. This film takes us inside Arbus' world and gives us a beautifully told and imaginative back-story that blends elements of real-life fact with references to Gothic literature, fairy stories, history and the subjective power of the art itself. The creative spirit of this film is exactly in tune with Arbus's creative vision. To give us something like the Rocky (1976) of photographer-themed biographical pictures would, to my mind at least, have been a much greater insult to the unique and continually captivating universe that this particular artist created through her work. You may disagree with the approach, or fail to see the appeal of the story, but for me, Fur is the kind of film that I feel I could go back to again and again and still find a number of things worth raving about.

Like one of Arbus's iconic pictures, Fur presents us with something seemingly drab, seemingly bizarre, and allows us to take the time to see the inherent beauty behind it. Like the work of Diane Arbus itself, you can choose to see it as something unfeeling or exploitative, or alternatively, you can see it as a gateway into understanding the enormous amount of empathy that Arbus had for her bizarre and often extraordinary subjects. The direction manages to create a mood and an ambiance that is halfway between the aforementioned William S. Burroughs and the antiseptic 50's Americana of The Bell Jar, with the otherworldly danger and mystique of a film like Pan's Labyrinth (2006). Alongside these stylistic elements we also have continual references to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and the notion of Beauty and the Beast, and all tied together by the fine performances from Kidman as the shackled, stifled Arbus and Robert Downey Jr. as the mysterious and sympathetic Lionel.

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Describe Downey's Performance In One Word... DirectorOfActors
So Embarassing Blahaha_87
Total bitch. jefflehem
The oldest daughter, Gracie Mulder-39
Diane's necklace? Crystal_Dreams
Why did Dianne end up going to a nudist colony? XxSarahxX-3
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