Film Review by Michael Gillespie | 08 Jan 2010
  • Warhol
Film title: Warhol
Director: David Bailey
Starring: Andy Warhol, Cecil Beaton, Luchino Visconti
Release date: 18 Jan
Certificate: E

Invaluable for students of sixties counter-culture, this intimate and controversial collection of documentaries by David Bailey has his titular pop artist profile (initially banned) as its centrepiece. The other films include a report from the set of Visconti’s Ludwig (the director is keen to talk; actor Helmut Berger isn’t) and an enchanting portrait of Sir Cecil, with insights from the Earls and Ladies of high society to the higher society of David Hockney and Mick Jagger. Andy and his associates can be unintentionally hilarious (expect the kind of inane hipster posturing that seemed profound when you were fourteen), but seeing the Factory players at work is fascinating, and the pop art visual and stylistic flourishes are winningly utilised (you can see the origins of modern arts programming here). While the subject is as aloof as expected, he remains witty and genial, but his post-shooting physicality speaks volumes: Bailey’s questions may not get under the artist’s skin, but his camera certainly does. [Michael Gillespie]