Passing away in the summer of 2021, Robert Downey Sr. left behind a career of extraordinary, rule-breaking films. With the support and wisdom of Robert Downey Jr. and the rest of his family, director Chris Smith (American Movie) has crafted a cinematic portrait of the late director and his closest relationships with “Sr.“, a selection at Telluride and NYFF. Ahead of a theatrical release this week and a Netflix release on December 2, the first trailer has now arrived.
Michael Frank said in his review, “Robert Downey Sr.’s accolades and popularity pale in comparison to his son. While Downey Sr. focused on writing and directing underground cinema in the 1960s and 1970s, his son became one of Hollywood’s leading men, wrapped up in major franchises, auteur directors, and Academy contenders. “Sr.” focuses on the life and career of the former, who struggled with Parkinson’s in his early 80s before passing away last summer. Chris Smith’s documentary is intertwined with both Downey men. It becomes more than just a collaboration: Downey Sr. cannot stay uninvolved, starting his own film about his life as Jr. works on the actual documentary, the two of which mix to create something reflexive. Sr. takes a camera crew around New York City to visit places that contain meaning. (One is a pond where he likes to look at the ducks.) Jr. tries getting his father to slow down, hoping to spend time together as the Parkinson’s worsens—we already know how this film and story will end.”
Watch the trailer below.
“Sr.” opens in theaters on Nov. 17 and arrives on Netflix on Dec. 2.