With his recent passing, documentary master Albert Maysles not only left behind a legendary career, but there’s still films of his audiences have yet to see. As his iconic Grey Gardens currently enjoys a restored re-release, the last film he worked on, In Transit, will premiere at Tribeca Film Festival. However, his last true solo effort is Iris, premiered at New York Film Festival last fall and tracks 94-year-old fashion icon and interior designer Iris Apfel, specifically with regard to her 2006 exhibition at the Met.
We said in our review, “Iris offers an entertaining view into the artistic process, encroaching mortality, and societal trends. The “Rare Bird of Fashion,” Iris, would be quick to argue that’s too much credit. The film builds and adds to the myth of a figure many outside the niche world are unfamiliar with. My favorite moments in Iris are the moments that are usually removed from other documentaries. Iris is eager to break the fourth wall and talk to Albert Maysles as he films her. She talks about the ladies that hit on him at fancy Upper East Side parties and offers him food. Maysles, powerless to respond, lets the camera roll and validates Iris’ wise word: “if you hang around long enough, everything comes back.” The time Maysles has spent with this compelling figure results in the return of a great filmmaker.”
Ahead of a theatrical release next month, the fantastic first poster and trailer have now arrived and can be seen below, along with a talk between Maysles and Apfel from NYFF last year.
IRIS pairs legendary 87-year-old documentarian Albert Maysles with Iris Apfel, the quick-witted, flamboyantly dressed 93-year-old style maven who has had an outsized presence on the New York fashion scene for decades. More than a fashion film, the documentary is a story about creativity and how, even in Iris’ dotage, a soaring free spirit continues to inspire. IRIS portrays a singular woman whose enthusiasm for fashion, art and people are life’s sustenance and reminds us that dressing, and indeed life, is nothing but an experiment. Despite the abundance of glamour in her current life, she continues to embrace the values and work ethic established during a middle-class Queens upbringing during the Great Depression. “I feel lucky to be working. If you’re lucky enough to do something you love, everything else follows.”
Iris will be released on April 29th.
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