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2,708 Ratings

Grey Gardens

United States, 1975


Iconic portrait of eccentric, reclusive mother and daughter duo Big and Little Edie, close relatives of Jackie Onassis who live together in a filthy, decaying mansion in the Hamptons with a slew of cats and raccoons.

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The aristocratic class has a rich tradition of dignified artistic representation. We are shown many photographs and paintings of the Beales that are in line with this tradition—but Grey Gardens in no way adheres to those standards. The camera is frequently at a downward angle. We stare from above at Big Edie and Little Edie as they sunbathe or eat ice cream in bed.
May 05, 2015
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If it were made today, it would likely be a more clinically correct but dramatically deficient film—the sad story of a mentally ill woman trapped in a co-dependent relationship with an enabling mother. But, as made in 1975, it is an epic tragicomedy of impoverished gentry clinging to each other desperately, wallowing in past glory and regrets—Tennessee Williams and William Faulkner with a touch of John Waters.
April 10, 2015
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Repeat viewings of Grey Gardens reveals a narratively complex structure that is equal parts journalistic, modernist, Gothic, and melodramatic.
March 10, 2015
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