First it was the documentary, then the series or film. First was The inventor: In search of the blood of Silicon Valley (HBO), about con artist Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos, her biomedical startup. Then T has comehe Dropout (Disney +), the fiction starring Amanda Seyfried. we watched the documentary The Staircase, (Netflix), Jean Xavier de Lestrade’s documentary about the trial of Michael Peterson, accused of murdering his wife, Katlheen Peterson. Now, in the HBO series, the alleged murderer is Colin Firth and the dead woman is Toni Collette. Long before, in 1975, the Maysles brothers made Grey Garden, about a downtrodden mother and daughter (both named Edith Beale) holed up in their dilapidated house in East Hampton. Some cousins of Jackie Kennedy and Lee Radzivill. From 2009 is the film starring Jessica Lange and Drew Barrymore. And Tea for two Jessica is branded like Big Edie did).
The Maysles brothers, whose best-known work is Grey Gardens, they have a 1966 short titled. In love with Truman (with love, from Truman) which can now be seen on Filmin (with them, there is Charlotte Zwerin behind the scenes). It’s Truman Capote talking about Cold-blooded. The title is Truman Capote’s dedication to them in the novel. It is a documentary that is made while a reporter interviews him (you have to see the reporter, a lady in pitiminí who from time to time lights a cigarette). It’s pure Hood. His peculiar voice. The calculated jokes of him. He is especially determined to emphasize that his is a new genre, “the non-fiction novel.” The union of Capote and the Maysles is curious because each one does the same with his narrative world. If Capote turns reality into art, the Mayles do the same, but with cameras. Although the Truman thing seems like more work. After all, the Maysles themselves have declared that neither one nor the other directs the characters, that they observe them and leave freedom of action and speech. And precisely in In love with Capote, what they do is let him do. Even let him cook. It is the spectacle of life. But you get to do it.
Capote explains to the interviewer how he came up with the idea of collecting Coca-Cola bottles. How were the relations between the two murderers. He describes the face of the killer Perry. Read parts of the novel. It’s a horrible voice, but it’s his.
In Filmin, and here there is only a documentary, there is the one about Jane por Charlotte. O sea, Charlotte Gainsbourg filmando a Jane Birkin. The molometer about to explode. Women we have seen in the cinema making fiction and now they are there telling each other, teaching each other. Birkin tells her daughter that she used to bully her as a child. There is a lot of talk about Kate, the daughter of John Barry who committed suicide (a John Barry who comes out badly for being a tyrant and a womanizer). Charlotte’s daughter Jo comes out. There are also Super 8 movies with little Kate. The staging that until then had been very natural (naturalistic) is now a premeditated beauty. Jane Birkin sitting sideways in front of a screen where she is looking at her dead daughter. And he cries, of course he cries. And Charlotte cuts, of course she cuts. But it is the only time that voyeurism that we are practicing all the time becomes a little uncomfortable. Not because it’s sensational, because until then it hadn’t been anything like that. It is not a biography, it is an almost blurred portrait of a woman (Birkin) and of the relationship between a mother and a daughter (Birkin and Gainsbourg). If they are alike in anything, it is in the fear that both declare when doing something. In front of the public. The documentary itself kept Charlotte awake. One sees these two women and, in addition to admiring them, she loves them. Which never happens with Truman Capote. This is like watching a cockroach read.