Following his breakthrough feature,
SECRETARY, director Steven Shainberg creates a ravishing
imaginary portrait of the visionary artist Diane Arbus in
his new film, FUR: AN IMAGINARY PORTRAIT OF DIANE
ARBUS. Much as an actual Arbus photo transports us into
strange and unfamiliar worlds, FUR travels through the
looking glass to explore the transformation of a shy woman
into a powerfully original artist. Oscar® winner Nicole
Kidman stars as “Diane Arbus,” a
devoted wife and mother whose innate talents and dark
obsessions are profoundly at odds with the conventional life
she leads in 1958 New York. Oscar®-nominee Robert Downey Jr.
as Lionel, an enigmatic new neighbor who launches Diane on
her journey to becoming the artist she is meant to be.
Inspired by Patricia Bosworth’s book “Diane Arbus: A
Biography,” FUR pays homage to a brilliant artistic talent
who challenged accepted notions of beauty and ugliness, and
forever changed photography through her radical techniques
and subject matter. Aptly, Shainberg and screenwriter Erin
Cressida Wilson have conjured FUR not as a biopic, but as
something different and original, unique and mysterious,
intertwining real aspects of Arbus’s life with invented
characters and an imaginary narrative. It is a new way of
cinematically approaching the portrayal of an historically
important person, and captures the real dilemma of a 1958
housewife who is torn between love for her husband and
children and her profound need to
create and explore. Brilliantly performed by Kidman and
Downey, FUR is a tale of artistic and personal
self-discovery; an Alice-in-Wonderland adventure that is
both exciting and scary, and ultimately, deeply moving.
©2006 Picture House . All rights reserved.
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