Tuesday, October 07, 2008
Since this movie was so disliked by many critics I was looking forward to seeing it...how could a movie with Kidman and Downey Jr tank? Well, I can see how...it is slow, clausrophobic, imaginary and supposedly about a real person...but not, artist Diane Arbus. But I rather liked this quirky movie.
The uneasiness of the movie made me feel curious and concerned for the characters. It is almost immediately apparent that a mysterious neighbour who moves upstars for Diane Arbus is imaginary...but it's such a great apartment Robert Downey Jr's character lives in that I became enchanted...and the actor has a hell of a challenge. How to act covered in hair. Or fur. No seriously. While I was watching the movie, all I could think about was...who else on earth beside Stagg and I would watch this movie? Of course, my sister! She would love these recreated fantasy New York apartments. And she would like this strange love story. So I phoned her...and she had already seen it. I said...I asked, I think the neighbour symbolized her secret marriage or something. And my sister was like, "how about it was her." Oh doh! Yes, of course. We see Kidman's character discover her voice in photgraphy and she secretly takes hundreds of photos. At one point her husband develops all the photos and they are only of a hallway. So it becomes clear the friendship and love story with a neighbour is "in Kidman's mind". Yes, I've spoiled the mystery of the movie for you...but I believe if you ever happen to see this movie, you will thank me for this spoiler. It is really cool to see the artist find her voice and self.
I totally want a hair coat now.
“To dispel the growing myth that [Arbus] only took pictures of freaks, she made up a list of elegant people she wanted to photograph…As if to prove her point, she took a remarkable portrait of Gloria Vanderbilt’s sleeping baby son, Anderson Hays Cooper, for a Harper’s Bazaar Valentine issue. In this truly astonishing picture, the infant resembles a flat white death’s head — eyes sealed shut, mouth pursed and moist with saliva. When Gloria Vanderbilt saw the photograph, she forbade Bazaar to publish it, but eventually she changed her mind and this stunning image opened Diane’s retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in 1972.” Patricia Bosworth