Critic Reviews



Based on 27 critic reviews provided by
More connect-the-dots detective thriller than traditional doc, John Maloof and Charlie Siskel’s revelatory riddle of a film unmasks a brilliant photographer who hid in plain sight for decades working as an eccentric French nanny.
[An] initially playful, ultimately haunting documentary.
Village Voice
Because her tale is so fascinating, movie-making formula is all that's needed.
What we find out about Maier, revealed in self-portraits as a striking woman with a singular sense of self, is fascinating.
John Maloof’s documentary has an opening both apt and witty: Talking heads, one after the other, struck dumb by the mystery at hand.
[A] sleekly assembled and intriguing if clearly very commercial proposition.
The question of whether Maier, a recluse, would have ever wanted someone like Maloof to bring her into the light is troubling, and perhaps impossible to resolve, but Maloof’s passion for her work and his boundless curiosity about her history certainly make for a riveting documentary.
The film, which [Mr. Maloof] directed with Charlie Siskel, is absorbing, touching and satisfyingly enjoyable because Maier was a fascinating, poignant and somewhat enigmatic woman.
Slant Magazine
This is less a portrait of an artist as a young woman than a psychological evaluation of a slippery subject.
Maier’s images are truly stunning—vivid documents of the working class that are off-the-cuff yet rigorously composed, always capturing that enigmatic bit of her subject’s soul that leaves you in spine-tingled awe.

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