Fur - An Imaginary Portrait of Diane Arbus
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was also responsible for "Secretary", but in retrospect this makes
perfect sense. Both films concern themselves with the twisted side
of humanity, or perhaps, the humanity of kink. "Fur" chronicles the
imaginary but convincing awakening of Diane Arbus to her true
fascination with the grotesque. Frustrated and oppressed by her
life as a vanilla 1950's housewife, Diane yearns for something more.
She sees the bizarre and disturbing details in her surroundings that
others miss, but thus far has not had the courage to record her
When she catches a glimpse of Lionel (Robert Downney Jr.), completely
masked, she somehow recognizes him as the key to escaping her
suffocating life. He sends her the key to his apartment, through
the sewer pipes, an apt metaphor. Hesitant at first, then exuberant,
she surrenders to her true self, the beautiful, poised woman
surrounded by dwarves and siamese twins who is nevertheless, in
Lionel's words, a "real freak". For Diane, this is badge of
Diane's fascination with the bizarre, and with Lionel, is intensely
sexual. The tension between the two protagonists is maintained
through the film, gradually turning to desperate longing.
Yet they hardly touch. Their inevitable coupling near the
end of the film seems anti-climatic. The real climax is the
terribly intimate and prolonged scene in which Diane shaves
Lionel's entire body.
I'll agree with other reviewers that the ending of the film
falters. Nevertheless, this movie touched me deeply, and I
recommend it highly.
I love a great love story. Please note, that the title clearly states that this is "An IMAGINARY Portrait of Diane Arbus". Perhaps another film maker wants to tackle a different, more true-to-life version at some point in the future, but in this particular take of her life, the real Diane serves mearly as a loosly based mold for the Diane of this film.
For me personally, this was one of those films that stuck with me for days after I saw it at the theater. I thought it was brilliant! It reminded me a bit of the '80's T.V. show "Beaty and the Beast".
My suggestion? Rent this before you buy it. If you love it, you'll watch it again and again and will definetly want to purchase it.
The late 50s. Diane Arbus (Kidman) lives with her husband, Allan (Ty Burrell), and their two daughters, in a large apartment in New York. They have converted part of the apartment into a photography studio and make a handsome living shooting covers for Vogue and ads for her father's (Harris Yulin) fur shops. But Diane is unhappy and feels that her life is unfulfilled. She no longer finds joy helping load her husband's camera, or fixing one of the model's outfits. Allan suggests she take some time off, shoot some photos of her own. One night, she overhears a new neighbor moving in upstairs. Peering out the window, she spots the new tenant, Lionel (Robert Downey Jr.), paying the movers. She is intrigued; Lionel is covered from head to toe in clothing, a crocheted mask covering his face and head. She soon ventures up to his apartment and learns he is covered from head to toe in long hair, fur. Lionel intrigues her and introduces her to a variety of strange people she would never have otherwise met; midgets, giants, people with no arms, Siamese twins, and others you would have to go to the sideshow attractions at a circus to meet, at least during this period. She begins to feel more comfortable around these people, and grows more distant from her husband and children.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is one of my favorite movies. It's sweet and awkward and quirky and unusual. I love this story.Published 14 days ago by Cynthia
the movie was expensive and it stopped part way through. it was supposedly new, but seems like someone made it at home---bummerPublished 26 days ago by bonboy
I really enjoyed this film. I wasn't expecting to like Nicole Kidman in this film but she portrayed this character quite well. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Bronte
I just borrowed this movie from the local library. I have seen Diane Arbus' work and I am a fan of both Ms. Kidman and Mr. Downey. Read morePublished 4 months ago by cambridgeflowerchild
Overall, an effective film. I think Robert Downey, Jr. was a poor choice for the mysterious "Who in the hell clogged the building's plumbing with their hair?" character. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Stanley C.
The movie probably has very little to do with the real Diane Arbus but it is an interesting artistically inspiring movie.Published 7 months ago by cmt