Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Grey Gardens

Around this time of year, I always get the urge to watch the documentary film "Grey Gardens" by Albert and David Maysles.  Perhaps it is the flag dance that Little Edie does that makes me think of 4th of July festivities, but whatever it is, the summer is a great time to view it.  I first caught this film, purely by accident, on a dull summer afternoon, with nothing to do.  The weather was too hot to do anything, so I was laying around looking for something interesting to watch.  At first I didn't realize it was a documentary, because the characters were too quirky and strange to be real people, but as the film went on, I became mesmerized and sucked into their world.  Afterwards, I looked up their information because I found both women incredibly fascinating.

I had the pleasure of meeting Albert Maysles back in 2002 where I was attending a viewing of another of the Maysles documentaries 'Gimme Shelter'.   He had talked fondly of Little Edie (who had recently passed away), and gave the audience some insight on her life AFTER Grey Gardens.  She was able to move out of the house after Big Edie passed away,  and lived in Florida and even performed shows to an adoring public.  It made me happy to think that she was able to live the life she so desperately wanted.

Below are some of my favorite scenes from the documentary.  If you haven't seen the HBO film starring Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange, I would suggest that you see the documentary first, you will understand how wonderfully they captured Big and Little Edie so perfectly.


Lemmy Caution said...

I've got this doc on DVD....and have never watched it yet! Sounds great. Need to give it a spin!

SUZY8-TRACK said...

I have an old video version of this film that I got on ebay years ago and have watched it countless times. You should watch the HBO movie with Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange too. It gives you more of a background on the ladies and how they ended up in a dilapidated old house in the Hamptons.

doodlegirl said...

just happened upon your blog and enjoyed this post. I discovered this documentary a year and a half ago. Last August, I was in NYC and we rented a car and drove out to the Hamptons and spent some time walking around Gray Gardens and the beach little Edie adored. Like you, I was mesmerized by them, as well. I recently read the diary by Lois Wright called "My Life at Grey Gardens: 13 Months and Beyond" and I think you'll enjoy it if you haven't read it yet..

Thanks for giving us a glimpse into her life after she left Gray Gardens.

SUZY8-TRACK said...

Thanks for the tip about Lois Wrights book. I'll definitely check it out. Lois appears briefly in the film during the birthday party scene.