HBO documentary on Arthur Miller to hit small screens

This film is an especially intimate portrait of the acclaimed playwright because it was made by his daughter, director Rebecca Miller.

March 21, 2018 20:42
1 minute read.
Arthur Miller

Arthur Miller. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Arthur Miller: Writer is a fascinating new documentary about one of the most acclaimed American Jewish writers of all time and it now available on both HOT VOD and YES VOD. It will be shown on HOT HBO on March 24 at 11 p.m. and YES Docu on March 26 at 10 p.m.

This film is an especially intimate portrait of the acclaimed playwright, who is best known for Death of a Salesman, The Crucible and All My Sons, because it was made by his daughter, director Rebecca Miller, who has made such feature films as Maggie’s Plan and Personal Velocity.

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Miller, who passed away in 2005, likely would not have granted the kind of access to a stranger that he gave to his daughter, or respond to anyone else’s questions with such candor.

The movie examines his professional and personal life, and by any standard, it’s quite a story.

He grew up wealthy in Manhattan with a businessman father and an artistic mother, only to move to Brooklyn after his father lost everything in the 1929 stock market crash. A poor student, he was not accepted to college at first and took menial jobs, eventually attending the University of Michigan, where he began writing plays.

The film features interviews with his siblings, his third wife and his children, and was made over a period of decades.

Miller discusses his turbulent marriage to Marilyn Monroe and his reactions to the critical failure of some of his later works. His description of his creative process will be especially interesting to anyone who loves theater.

Those who would be interested to see what Miller had to say about the fact that he institutionalized his son Daniel, who was born with Down Syndrome, at birth and rarely saw him will be disappointed, however.

Rebecca Miller says her father agreed to talk about this, but she never felt the moment was right for her to bring it up.

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