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IN THE REAL WORLD
USA: Palm Pictures
UK: ICA Projects
Cast: William J Eggleston
Director: Michael Almereyda
USA: 86 mins
UK: 85 mins
USA Release Date: 31 August 2005 (Limited Release - New York)
UK Release Date: 18 November 2005 (Limited Release - London, ICA)
A film celebration of American photographer William Eggleston, whose controversial exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art in 1976 is now seen as the defining moment in which colour photography was elevated to the status of 'art'. Born in Memphis, Tennessee in 1939 Eggleston has become one of the world's most influential artists, his deceptively casual images of everyday subjects, with their vivid, saturated colours, travelling out of the gallery and into the world of advertising, popular film and the work of other photographers.
Michael Almereyda (NADJA, HAMLET) captures the essence of Eggleston in this visual critical essay and portrait of the artist at work and rest. Beginning on the road with Eggleston, Almereyda moves back and forth between analysing Eggleston's photographs and experiencing the artist's life firsthand. Alcohol, close friends and music are as prominent as Eggleston's trusty Leica, with a clear sense of Eggleston's world and how he sees it slowly emerging from the broken conversations, periods of silence, interviews with friends and family and extended appreciation of the work itself. A haunting, highly personal film that gains greatly from Almereyda's own hushed voice-over and an experimental electronic score from Simon Fisher Turner. Make sure you stay through the end credits for the film's gently optimistic coda.