Albert Maysles The Legend

Albert-MayslesHello everyone and Happy Thursday! I have some good news this fine day…I have a job! It’s at a documentary center in the city and it has the best possible environment that anyone could ask for. The people here are all exceptionally nice and the vibe is so chill that I don’t have to bother with business casual. You have no idea how happy it makes me to just wear a t-shirt and shorts when the weather is heating up as it is. As an aside, a coworker informed me that this summer will be an extremely hot one and this absolutely terrifies me.

In honor of getting a job at a documentary film center, I want to turn the focus of today’s post to a very prolific documentary filmmaker, Albert Maysles. Albert was born in 1926 and actually started out teaching psychology at university before turning to filmmaking. I had the amazing opportunity to sit in on a talk that he gave in which he talked a little about his work and the differences between shooting celebrities and the normal folk. He does not include people who do not want to be filmed in his documentaries and is adamant about creating a bond with his subjects and filming them as they are instead of creating a narrated version of themselves. Albert truly humanizes his subjects’ experiences and stories.
Among his most notable films are Salesman, Grey GardensGimme Shelter, and The Beatles: The First U.S. Visit, but let me be the first to tell you that that he has countless others. At 87 Albert is still filming diligently. He is currently working on a film about train travel…yes I know, Albert is a legend. He has won so many awards for his work including two Emmys. Watching him is so inspiring because he truly is such a wealth of information and crazy cool stories, yet so humble.
So if you all have time please check out some of Albert’s work. I, myself, will be watching Salesman this weekend and I’ll let you know what  I think. As an aside, Salesman tells the story of four  door-to-door Bible salesmen who struggle to sell their wares despite their target audience being religious church-goers.
So if you have seen or will see an Maysles original leave a comment below and tell me what you thought or which movie you’re going to see! Catch you next Thursday!



4 thoughts on “Albert Maysles The Legend

  1. I had the pleasure of meeting Albert last December … on the train, as his crew was filming. And now I’m a fan as well. And yes, he still has the ability to put someone he is filming at complete ease. (I’ve been watching his movies. “Salesman” is next. I bought the Beatles in the US –’64– sweet.)

    1. Ah yes, Albert’s upcoming train doc – I’ve seen a couple rough cuts and it looks great so far and very engaging!
      Another doc by Albert that I highly suggest is Gimme Shelter (on the Rolling Stones) – I recently sat down and watched that one myself. But I think Salesman is dearest to Albert’s heart so I hope you enjoy it!

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