Bert Stern: Original Madman

2011

Documentary

33
IMDb Rating 6.7 10 258

Synopsis


Downloaded times
November 18, 2021

Cast

Suzy Parker as (archive footage)
Twiggy as Self
720p.BLU 1080p.BLU
815.33 MB
1280*720
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
89 min
P/S N/A / N/A
1.48 GB
1920×1080
English 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
89 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by moonspinner55 4 / 10 / 10

"Women are goddesses...men are the slaves."

Bertram Stern (Oct. 3, 1929 – June 26, 2013) was a school dropout-turned-soda jerk in Brooklyn who eventually found his way into the mail room of Look magazine when he was just 16 years old. After serving in the Army, where his talents as a photographer landed him the opportunity to shoot pictures of the beautiful ladies of Japan, Stern won an award for an amazing Smirnoff vodka ad; this led to his legendary career as a portrait and fashion photographer, with famous subjects including Liz and Dick, Audrey Hepburn, Sue Lyon, Twiggy and, most famously, Marilyn Monroe (he also co-directed a highly-acclaimed 1959 jazz documentary, "Jazz on a Summer's Day", snippets of which are seen here). Directed by his third and final wife, Shannah Laumeister (who hoped to be Stern's next discovery but settled on being his wife and muse), this documentary is not (surprisingly) filled with colorful anecdotes on the rich and famous. Stern (who resembled a more-handsome version of Hugh Hefner in his youth) tells very few behind-the-lens stories; he comes off as a would-be self-effacing man, modest to the point of being arrogant about his modesty, who doesn't think he himself a very good subject. Not all of his celebrity photographs are worthy of the praise he has received (some of the women, with their faraway eyes and sad mouths, look rather hard), although his advertisement layouts are still striking today. This is not an incisive look at the enigmatic Stern, but that's not due to Laumeister's lack of effort. Everything is here for a great film-record of Stern's life, but he appears to have taken the best chapters to his grave. ** from ****

Reviewed by StrictlyConfidential 7 / 10 / 10

A Vivid Portrait Of An American Celebrity/Fashion Photographer

In this "Original Mad Man" bio-documentary, American photographer, Bert Stern tells his life's story in his own words (And, believe me - Sometimes it ain't exactly a pretty picture). Born (1929) in Brooklyn, NY - Bert Stern's photographic career endured for 40+ years. Throughout this time Stern became well-known for both his iconic celebrity portraits, as well as his popular fashion photography, too. *Note* - In 2013 - Bert Stern (83 at the time) died of a heart attack.

Reviewed by larrys3 7 / 10 / 10

Doc Reveals a Photographic Genius

To me the power of this documentary was in the display of the stunning photographs of Bert Stern. To me they were not only stunning but could be highly provocative and erotic, capturing the personality of the person (usually a famous woman) that was being photographed. The film traces Stern's career as he began to receive notoriety with his highly successful advertising campaign for Smirnoff Vodka(interesting to note that due to the moral codes of the 1950's women were not allowed to appear in liquor ads). He went on to be a major contributor to Vogue magazine, in the 60's. Also, Stern created the highly controversial movie posters and ads for the 1962 film "Lolita", which not only stirred up the censors but the general public. Considered to be his most famous shoot was the "Last Sitting" photos of Marilyn Monroe shortly before her death, in '62. They captured Marilyn's sensual naked body covered in part by jewelry or sheer wraps. Just a note here that a number of photos in the film reveal either bare breasts or full frontal nudity of women, but to me they seemed professional and certainly not smutty. I saw that Stern passed away earlier this year at the age of 83, as he was over 80 when the movie was being shot. He's telling the story of his life to the filmmaker Shannah Laumeister, whom he calls his muse while she maintains they have been soul mates for many years. Stern seems emotionless and monotone as he reveals his life, and possibly depressed at times. There is some history of his personal life, which includes failed marriages due to womanizing and drug use. He became addicted to amphetamines which eventually led to his hearing voices, mania, and agoraphobia. He lost everything including his career and his money and ended up in Spain at the home of a friend. Amazingly, having to return to the States for a divorce hearing, he made a startling comeback by photographing pills out of "The Physicians Desk Reference Book", for what became "The Pill Book", selling 17 million copies to date. It seemed to me there was a lot more to his story than was revealed, but I didn't really care as I was more interested in his photographic work. As mentioned, the strength of this documentary was seeing the amazing ability of Stern to capture an image with his photographs. To me they seemed timeless, brilliant, and unforgettable.

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