Famed (and famously cantankerous) cinematographer and activist Haskell Wexler submits ungraciously to the shrewd documentary scrutiny of his photojournalist son.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2005
“Master cinematographer and longtime activist Haskell Wexler has always had a reputation for being a pain in the ass. He’s won two Oscars in a dazzling career that includes Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, American Graffiti, and Bound for Glory. His Medium Cool, set during the violence of Chicago’s 1968 Democratic convention, is a counterculture classic. But behind the scenes in Hollywood, Wexler remains a moody, irascible character with a big attitude problem. He explains: ‘I don’t think there’s a movie I’ve worked on that I wasn’t sure I could direct better.’ He has met his match in his good-natured, gentle (but actually strong-as-steel) son, Mark S. Wexler, a photojournalist who spent 18 months training his camera on his father. The result: a compelling documentary… It’s an overview of a great artist’s life as well as the powerful story of a father and son struggling to connect.” — Patricia Bosworth, Vanity Fair
Actors Jane Fonda, Michael Douglas, Julia Roberts, Paul Newman and cinematographer Conrad Hall testify variously to Wexler Snr’s overbearing egotism and inspiring creativity.