We watched "Factory Girl" on DVD last night. I have more than a passing interest in the 1960s, love the Velvet Underground and don't mind a bit of Warhol now and then, so I thought it might be interesting. It wasn't.
How such an interesting time with so many iconic characters could result in such a dull film is quite remarkable. The film was supposed to be the real girl behind the image of Edie Sedgwick, but on the basis of this, there really wasn't much behind the image. Her father abused her as a child and one of her brothers was killed in an accident but nothing more is offered about he as person. She was then, allegedly, exploited by both Warhol and Dylan. I say allegedly because the film caused outrage in both camps, with Warhol's estate insisting she was not cut off by him and had already left his entourage of her own accord and Dylan tried to have the whole project blocked. Then this film comes along and exploits her image in much the same way.
The Dylan bit was actually hilarious - unintentionally I should imagine. To get around the legal problems with Dylan being unhappy at being accused of causing the downfall of someone he claims to have barely known, the filmmakers could not call the obviously-Dylan character, Bob Dylan. Instead, they made this unnamed musican as Dylan-like as possible - he entered with a harmonica around his neck and spoke in the same way that Dylan sings (I'm pretty sure Dylan does not speak in the same way he sings) which had us laughing everytime he came on screen. Lou Reed was apparently also appauled when he read the script although this may have been as much to do with someone from Weezer playing him.
This is the first thing I've seen Sienna Miller in other than gossip columns (or when I saw her in real life) and she is nominated for a BAFTA at tonight's awards. So how was she? She wasn't bad at all. She was ok. But then she was playing a pretty rich girl who wants to be famous and respected, but is best known for who she hangs around with and what clothes she wears. So not much of a stretch there really. And at times it did feel like the purpose of the whole film was just an excuse for her to wear lots of pretty clothes. But on a positive note, the clothes were very very nice.