This is such a fun, delightful film. I challenge you, even if you don’t care about photography or fashion, to walk out of the theater afterwards without a smile.
The New Yorker ran some excerpts from Cheryl Dunn’s documentary on street photography last month, but now you can watch the entire thing on the film’s website. My favorite sections are those with Ricky Powell, who explains how getting dumped by a girl made him a photographer, and Joel Meyerowitz, who describes how the streets suddenly became alive to him when he began street photography.
At one point in this documentary, made by Annie Leibovitz’s sister, Leibovitz recalls a cover shoot for Rolling Stone that she did with a group of musicians that included Bruce Springsteen and Jackson Browne. She lined them up against a white wall and took photos. When Leibovitz’s mentor, Bea Feitler, saw the photos she berated her, telling the photographer that she could have done so much more with that group of people. How often is that the case—that we could have made so much more out of what we had? One other thing I noticed in this film is that Leibovitz uses her Leica M6 for almost all of her personal and family photos. I recall having seen a retrospective of her work a few years ago at the Legion of Honor in San Francisco. In it, there was a photograph of Susan Sontag in Seattle, on her way back to New York to die. It’s reproduced here in this documentary, and it’s still one of the saddest photographs I’ve ever seen.
Watch the trailer here.