Finding Vivian Maier

Finding Vivian Maier

John Maloof (2014)

12 Certificate


Our Score
The key to a great documentary is a compelling story and skilful, sympathetic film-making. John Maloof and Charlie Siskel's film about Vivian Maier, a former nanny who, after her death, was revealed to be a compulsive and stunningly talented photographer, has both in spades. Maier was utterly unknown to the art world when in 2007 Maloof bought an old box of negatives and, amazed by their quality, resolved to find out who took them, subsequently amassing an archive of tens of thousands of pictures. He and Siskel reveal a complex, difficult character and hint at darker elements to Maier's personality as they try to bring this intensely private woman's life into focus. But the film is not just about Maier's photographs. It's also about the people she encountered, their surprisingly different memories of the same person, and about the nature of art and the ethics of making money out of the work of a woman who refused to show it during her lifetime. And, finally, it's a strangely haunting tale of a life quietly slipping away unnoticed.


Documentary about the photographer, who pursued her art for decades without sharing her work with others, creating an extensive document of life in New York, Chicago and Los Angeles while working as a nanny. The photographs were not discovered until after her death, when a fellow artist found them at an auction of her possessions.

Cast & Crew

Director John Maloof
Director Charlie Siskel

Other Information

Language: English / FrenchColourTheatrical distributor: Soda PicturesAvailable on: DVD and Blu-rayReleased on: 18 Jul 2014