William Eggleston in the Real World | Chicago Reader

William Eggleston in the Real World

Michael Almereyda—whose previous documentary, This So-Called Disaster (2003), carefully observed Sam Shepard directing one of his autobiographical plays—ponders the reticence and creative vision of master photographer William Eggleston, shown mainly in Kentucky (working on a project for filmmaker Gus Van Sant) and Memphis (the photographer's home base). There's a certain amount of tension between Eggleston, who mistrusts verbal descriptions of his work, and Almereyda, whose special way with words is evident in both his voice-over narration and his recorded conversations with the subject. Yet the mystery generated by this conflict seems wholly in keeping with Eggleston's art and reminds me of Walker Evans and James Agee's collaboration on Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. 87 min.

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