Tell Them Anything You Want: A Portrait of Maurice Sendak (2009)
June 16, 2022 11:09 PM - Subscribe

Directed by Lance Bangs and Spike Jonze. A loving look at one of the most cherished and controversial figures in children's literature, Maurice Sendak. In this deeply moving tribute, spend time with the man who spoke to children through his stories and illustrations in a way no one else could.

This is a short and powerful film. Direct and honest, both in the subject matter, and in the filming and editing.
There is no attempt to hide the process, you often see the camera and how things are being filmed.
It's a surprisingly gentle and kind film given the subject matter. Sendak is not a easy person. He's very focused on death and his own decline as he ages.
He talks openly about his difficult childhood, and his struggle with his own sexuality (he's gay).
But he also talks about the people who helped him, his deep love and admiration for his sister and brother, and his editor.
And of course the books he created.
Not a comfortable documentary, but fascinating and inspiring.
posted by Zumbador (3 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Is this the one with the anecdote about the Lindbergh baby? That messed me up man.
posted by Wretch729 at 7:35 AM on June 19, 2022

Yep. That's the one!
posted by Zumbador at 7:52 AM on June 19, 2022

Thanks for mentioning this film - I had never heard or it but I watched it last night and I just loved it. The rough style that incorporated the filmmakers and their filmmaking process were perfect. I love that this is a limited project - not an attempt to tell a whole life, just a snapshot at the end of one. I found it very moving and the themes of his mostly self-imposed existential despair quite resonant.
posted by latkes at 6:43 AM on June 23, 2022 [1 favorite]

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