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If, like me, you thought HBO’s re-enactment of the famous original train wreck documentary Grey Gardens was kind of unnecessary, this first promo for it that aired after Big Love Sunday night shows that it’s, at the very least, a showcase for Drew Barrymore’s amazing Little Edie impression (this is the best quality version available right now):

But don’t even think about watching this movie before watching Grey Gardens the documentary first. That’s a given, but it must be said.

Comments (14)
  1. in videogumese: they rode the express train to pointlesstown. what’s next? the dramatic adaptation of king of kong starring john heder? annoying.

  2. Julie  |   Posted on Mar 10th, 2009 +2

    sorry if this makes me look like a loser (but a winner in real life because this is about documentary film), but what exactly was so trainwrecky and famous about the original? Anyone?

    • itsafamilyname  |   Posted on Mar 11th, 2009 +1

      So… imagine you took Bette Davis in “What ever Happened to Baby Jane?”, Miss Havisham from Great Expectations, Gloria Swanson in Sunset Boulevard, and a dash of the general ethos of Ethan Frome. Then mix them all up to make a crazy mother daughter pair and place them in this crazy palatial flop house in the Hamptons, replete with lots of cats, etc. Then have the Mayles follow them around. It is really affecting.

      (Though I have my reservations about a dramatized version. How could Grey Gardens be improved upon?)

    • Just to clarify for ol’ Jules, the documentary is great (Maysles Bros!), and you should go see it; it is the subjects’ lives that are a train wreck. They’re Jackie O’s cousins, they were beautiful young ladies, but they’ve managed to land themselves in a rotting mansion infested with raccoons and polydactyl cats. Whenever the documentarians show up, they fall over themselves competing for their attention; Little Edie Beale puts on impromptu song-and-dance numbers for them in her homemade clothes. But somehow the tone is never mocking; you find yourself sympathizing with and maybe even admiring these poor batty ladies as they reminisce about their former lives and pour out another heap of raccoon food.

      So Julie, c’mon, how come you’ve never seen this? Have you really NO gay friends?

  3. hey  |   Posted on Mar 10th, 2009 0

    I don’t know if it’s that big of a deal but, the name of the original documentary is also “Grey Gardens”. “The Beales of Grey Gardens” is the name of the 2006 follow-up documentary to the 1975 original… Just to clarify, that it is the original documentary that is amazing.

    • oops, you’re right. I’ve been getting that wrong for years. I could have sworn the title sequence said that but wikipedia can’t be argued with.

  4. I agree, I totally don’t get why this movie was made. A book on how the Beales ended up where they ended up would make sense, but this movie seems stupid.

  5. Claude  |   Posted on Mar 10th, 2009 0

    As an unaonditional fan of the doc, I can say that I’m very intrigued by this movie.

    Since its resolutely gay-friendly aesthethics destined the original to a Broadway treatment, it should come as no surprise that a movie treatment would ensue.
    I am looking forward to the early years portion of the movie, hoping to learn something new about the two ladies…

  6. Claude  |   Posted on Mar 10th, 2009 -2

    As an unaonditional fan of the doc, I can say that I’m very intrigued by this movie.

    Since its resolutely gay-friendly aesthethics destined the original to a Broadway treatment, it should come as no surprise that a movie treatment would ensue.
    I am looking forward to the early years portion of the movie, hoping to learn something new about the two ladies…

  7. my wife and i were both blown away by drew barrymore’s “performance” (can’t judge an entire performance by a trailer). i had to rewind our DVR to make sure they weren’t interspersing actual documentary footage with the new drew footage. so far, impressive. and it looks like the movie will go way beyond the scope of the original doc, showing the beales’ lives prior to the “fall” and also showing the impact the doc had on their lives. so i’m going to keep an open mind about this.

  8. Just the same, no one should see the Real World movie without watching the entire 3rd season of Real World. What?!!

  9. edc  |   Posted on Mar 10th, 2009 0

    little Edie was so fapable, that documentary breaks my heart that she didn’t become a movie star or married to a rich old italian count.

  10. Annie  |   Posted on Mar 11th, 2009 0

    Tea for two
    and two for tea
    Just me for you
    aaaand you for me

  11. As someone who knew the REAL Edie Beale quite well(Robb Brawn & Edie Beale at Grey Gardens pictured at left), I am pretty blown away at how Drew nails this character. I have long known of her obsession with Edie and Grey Gardens, and I’m sure this is why she pulls it off so well. Drew did this picture for a fraction of what she usually commands to do a film. She REALLY wanted to do this. For anyone who intends to watch the HBO movie and has not seen the original 1975 documentary, this is a MUST before you watch the HBO movie. For those who are familiar with the story, the HBO movie will fill in a lot of the gaps in the story that most fans have been wondering about for 3 decades. For lots on Edie and Grey Gardens, check out our website at http://www.MyGreyGardens.com

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