Reviews

Finding Vivian Maier

3

A photographer unexpectedly ahead of her time

John Maloof and Charlie Siskel’s engaging but problematic doc tells how a chance discovery unearthed a talented but unknown photographer: the late Vivan Maier, an eccentric nanny with a gift for portraiture and a scarcely believable backstory. With her stern manners, intense privacy and odd dress sense, Maier resembled a real-life Wes Anderson character; likewise, her square-framed imagery and hoarded bric-a-brac define the film’s playful aesthetic.

Mostly, it’s a study of an analogue ghost turned digital star; yet because Maloof is vested in building Maier’s reputation, the film leaves some uncomfortable questions about the ethics of posthumous fame.

Film Details