The First Monday in May
The Tribeca Film Festival is a very exciting time in New York for movie buffs. I was very lucky to get tickets to new documentary The First Monday in May last night and can’t say enough good things about the film. It was conceived by Andrew Rossi who previously directed the award winning documentary Page One: Inside the New York Times. The title refers to the first Monday in May when The Metropolitan Museum of Art is closed for the annual Costume Institute’s Met Gala that is hosted by Anna Wintour and Vogue magazine. But the film is really about the preparation leading up to that night and follows curator Andrew Bolton and everyone at The Met as they prepare for 2015 exhibition China: Through the Looking Glass.
There is nothing worse than a boring documentary, as I realized recently after watching one on television, but The First Monday in May is compelling from start to finish. It follows the serious and stressful preparations for the exhibition but also manages to be lighthearted and funny. You see Anna Wintour smiling and enjoying herself which is obviously at odds with her reputation. I especially loved filmmaker Wong Kar Wai‘s very sage words of wisdom as he works with Andrew Bolton as creative director of the exhibition. At one point he says, “if you see too much, you see nothing.” Very prophetic statement for our very overstimulated online world.