Tony Zierra directs Leon Vitali, Stanley Kubrick and R. Lee Ermey in this documentary about the man who gave up a promising acting career to become Stanley Kubrick’s constantly on-call assistant.
Full of fascinating late period Kubrick anecdotes and trivia this is treasure trove for fans of the master. This a portrait of a man who clearly loves Kubrick, to devotional levels, and considering we all must love the great director to some extent, it is perfectly understandable. Do we get any great new personal insight into the famous auteur? Not really. He remains the fastidious enigma he always will be. Do we get an insight into the level of commitment he demanded from his trusted allies? Yes. And that relationship, while artistically worthwhile, feels vampiric and tragic. To see where Vitali begins his career to where he ends up, reveals a man who worked hard to facilitate another’s dreams then found few continued options when the dreamer died. Corporate Hollywood has no use for him, you’d struggle to think of another director who would require his Herculean skillset. Vitali is a ghost of filmmaking past. But as footnotes go his story is compelling.
My Top 10 Stanley Kubrick Movies
1. The Shining (1980)
2. A Clockwork Orange (1971)
3. The Killing (1956)
4. Barry Lyndon (1975)
5. Dr. Strangelove Or: How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love The Bomb (1964)
6. Paths Of Glory (1957)