Comments (25)Add a Comment
Bill Cunningham is an endearing fashion photographer who lives in a small, cramped NYC apartment packed to the rafters with his photographs. Even more remarkable is his seemingly humble background or otherwise “normalness.” Although he hobnobs with the fashion worlds’ most famous citizens, he is not wealthy or born into a famous family.
Cunningham is a photographer for the New York Times and produces a weekly narrated slide show “On the Street” documenting fashion in New York City (NYC). Although he does occasionally photograph models, most of his images are of people walking on the streets in NYC who dress stylishly, sometimes outlandishly so. Cunningham is over 80 years old and has been capturing NYC’s street fashion for over 50 years. He gets around by bicycle and over his career has had 28 bicycles stolen.
Note: Bill Cunningham died age 87 on June 25, 2016.
This very watchable and enjoyable documentary made me want to carry a camera everywhere I go and photograph all the fascinating fashions that pass by. This is what the subject of the movie did and his passion for doing so is infectious. As I sat in my car, watching the film on Kanopy, on my iPhone, I looked up to see a man in a dress pass by and later a woman in a fur vest with a blue streak in her hair. I am not going to make this my life, so I resisted the urge to jump up and ask for a photo, but I'm so glad Bill Cunningham never thought twice about following his passions. A wonderful film about an interesting, passionate, and self-effacing man. Very enjoyable documentary, also available on Kanopy.
If you like this wonderful documentary on the octogenarian, bike-riding, New York City street fashion photographer, Bill Cunningham, you may also like his posthumously published memoir, “Fashion Climbing” which provides a glimpse inside the fashion world he chronicled for decades.
Bill Cunningham was a wonderful guy and this comes through in the movie. But the filmmaker only needed to put the camera on him discretely and that story would have been told. The footage of Bill is great and extensive. The other NYC characters who appear to get gussied up in the hopes of being captured by the late, great fashion photographer are... yes... eccentric... but eccentric on purpose which is a little less than interesting. They love the spotlight and the filmmaker indulges them. Bill, on the other hand, is self-effacing which makes him the more compelling character. Bill was well known to be a very private person. The filmmaker awkwardly asks him personal questions that visibly upset this cheerful man. That was painful to watch and unnecessary. So, overall I would recommend the film because of Bill, but I do think the filmmaker could have handled things better.
A true delight for anyone who likes biopics about honorable, talented, passionate people. Bill Cunningham has photographed street fashion for decades and published his photos in a regular column in the NYTimes. To give you an idea of his impact , he was given an honorary award from the French Ministry of Culture. His argument for the importance of fashion is compelling. Watch this moving portrait of a remarkable man.
Interesting film. His whole life was about taking pictures of people. He did not do much else. He seemed happy though.
Bill's a peach of a man. He follows his passion and refuses to sell out. He has 28 bikes stolen from him while living in Carnegie Hall and attends church every Sunday. He states it's nearly impossible to remain honest and straight in New York and that fashion is the armor to survive everyday life.
Delightful bioflic! This is very inspiring in a most elevating way. If you are struggling to do your work, whatever it might be, I think you will get some ideas about what success means.
Bill Cunningham is one-of-a-kind. A friend returned home from NYC a few months ago and was thrilled to report she'd spotted him pedaling down the street.
Like some who give their life to the Church, Bill Cunningham has given his life to fashion. Bicycling around New York City snapping photos of ordinary people dressing for art, working late into the evenings covering black tie events, this is a man whose work is his life. This documentary reveals the funny, poignant and kindhearted person who is known to everyone as just Bill.
I loved this movie! It was full of so many brilliant, interesting and totally unique people, like Bill Cunningham himself. How can you not be inspired by the joy he takes in his work? And I loved the flamboyant dressers that he photographs on the streets of New York...I wish I had the courage to dress like female version of the ex-ambassador of Nepal but I don't think my city's ready yet.
This documentary was highly recommended to me by several people in the last few years so I finally decided to watch it. It did a good job of creating an odd, sad, somewhat lifeless mood when dealing with seemingly nice but odd people who cling to the past and, as a result, dwell/exist in surreal, lifeless surroundings. It also gave an eye rolling glimpse into how utterly ridiculous and self absorbed the fashion industry, the powers that be and the wealthy can be. The viewer gets the gist pretty early on and the theme is repeated many times. It, ultimately, didn't hold my attention and when I was ready for it to end there was over 1/2 hour left. I think it could benefit from being tightened up and made shorter.
Bill makes me want to do 3 things:
-relocate to NYC
-ride a bicycle
Bill Cunningham may be the only asexual person I have ever come across thus far.
Also, he appreciates 'human weirdness' and i like that!
worth seeing even if you dont like fashion and glamor that came with it. its fascinating story about one man life long obsession.
Well worth seeing ...much more than I expected ! ,... For the extraordinary yet humble photo-artist, the insightfully documented fashion, and the beautifully and lovingly crafted biopic.
A must see for those who love Fashion. Bill Cunningham is a modest man with an extraordinary eye for the trends and wild hairs of fashion.
Have to admit that I had never heard of Bill Cunningham but after this doc I feel like I've lived along side him and its a great tale to tell. Obsessed by the detail of fashion, he chronicles high society, the fashion runway and the streets of New York at an amazing pace.
A very interesting and heart warming look at a artist who goes his own way in a city he loves.
This was not what I thought it would be. I thought this documentary would simply follow Bill Cunningham about as he took photos of the rich, the famous, and the kooky (ho-hum). Although, there was a lot of that, this was more about Bill Cunningham the milliner (he made gorgeous hats), the soldier, the longtime resident of Carnegie Hall, the photographer, and finally, the humble man. He is over 80 and still working as hard as ever, and is recognized the world over…only idiots yell at him when he takes their photo…for all others, it’s an honor. And when a young woman, who was regulating the entrance to a Parisian fashion show, did not recognize him, and would not let him in, someone ran over, pulled him in, and said to her scornfully…”he’s only the most famous man in world”…and for every-man fashion, and for society fashion, he is. This documentary is by turns fascinating, hysterical, and for one moment, shockingly sad (have a tissue ready). It shows great current, and archival footage of him riding around on his bike in the ever congested Manhattan (and in one instance crashing into a cab). Enjoy!
A fitting and overdue tribute to veteran New York Times columnist and fashion photographer Bill Cunningham (born 1929, still working harder than most people half his age), known for his innovative and candid but also deeply humane images of street-fashion trends and high society. Reportedly, this supremely dedicated and disciplined journalist was the only member of the media to be honoured with an invitation to Lady Brooke Astor’s posh 100th birthday party in 2002. In 2008 Bill was also justly awarded the title chevalier dans l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture. This documentary, directed by Bill’s sympathetic ex-Times colleague Richard Press, profiles many of Bill’s most extraordinary gifts, including his unwaivering ethic, his all-discerning eye, his ability to foretell the future, and his understanding like no one else's of the interplay between beauty, fashion, and street style.
This is a fabulous film. Cunningham is a living legend and it's so great that they've captured and documented him in action.
Thanks for making this film available, HPL!