Director Edmund Coulthard, Nan Goldin / 1995 / UK

Nan Goldin's emotionally involving auto­biographical documentary is about Paradise Lost. From the Boston drag scene of the 70s, to New York's gay heaven, this fascinating American photographer has seen it all. And photographed it all. As she says in her candid commentary, there is no question of voyeurism in her photography. These worlds which she captured on film were hers, she was an insider. AIDS, of course, and drug addiction, changed everything Goldin's male and female friends died, and she went into rehab The clinic took away her camera, her means of expression. Her first self portrait. after rehab, is tentative and extraordinary. Autobiographical documentary is a rare genre. People are either too coy or too egotistical to make something engaging. In this film, as in her stills, Nan Goldin avoids these traps. The choice of music that she and her co-director have made is a magnificent anthem to the tumultuous times. The final sequence is a montage of still images, reprising her life as a photographer, set to the sound of Eartha Kitt singing All By Myself.

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