Grey Gardens (1975)

Grey Gardens (1975, USA) C-94m. ** D: Ellen Hovde, Albert Maysles, David Maysles, Muffie Meyer. Featuring Edith Bouvier Beale, Edith B. Beale Jr. Controversial documentary by David and Albert Maysles, who filmed the Bouvier-Beales, mother and daughter - and interestingly, also the aunt and cousin of Jackie Onassis - in their run-down, derelict villa. The two women are shown reminiscing, discussing every-day matters, simply surviving in a world they are out of touch with. Intriguing to some degree, especially for psychologists, but filmmakers approach is blunt, even sensationalistic. A cult film for some, this one is certainly a time document, predating the reality TV era by more than twenty years. May also have been an influence on Lars von Trier's Dogma manifesto, since this was mostly filmed with a hand camera.


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© Ron Altman