“You know her name, but not her story.”
HBO’s newest film, Nothing Left Unsaid, is a documentary depicting the life of socialite, artist, and mother, Gloria Vanderbilt. Vanderbilt has had a very unique life filled with a lot of ups and definitely a lot of downs. In the film, her son, Anderson Cooper, helps her go through her life events from the beginning to the near present. The documentary is in a unique format where Anderson interviews his mother, and in turn, a lot of things about her life that many did not know come to light. In fact, Anderson himself discovered a few things on camera about his mother that he didn’t know prior. And with talented director Liz Garbus (What Happened, Miss Simone? and Bobby Fischer against the World) taking the reins, this documentary was one to remember.
One thing that was extremely evident from the film was how great Anderson’s relationship is with Gloria. They were able to talk about Gloria’s life with such ease. This in turn helped the audience empathize with Gloria’s story. Also, Gloria’s sense of humor during the film came out really well which made her a more relatable character. Garbus does a phenomenal job in directing them and capturing these subtleties in their personalities which makes this film all the more engaging. Both Anderson and Gloria, people who are considered celebrities in their own respect, are shown to be simple, real people. This is especially important because sometimes public figures comes off as inaccessible.
The film’s runtime is 1 hour and 48 minutes. With a subject like Gloria, there was a lot of ground to cover. With that being said, some of the moments dragged on a bit. Also, the film ended on a heavy and sad note. Overall, Nothing Left Unsaid does a wonderful job at exploring all the moments that Gloria recounted.
On a finishing note, this documentary was very well made. Gloria Vanderbilt has been in the public eye for a very long time and it was nice to get the full picture of what her life was like. The film hopes to motivate people to find out their parents’ stories and leave nothing left unsaid before it’s too late. And at the end of the film, you better believe that it will make you want to call your parents and tell them that you love them.
The film will premiere tonight on HBO.