Saturday, April 23, 2011

HBO movie revisits Loud family, reality TV's roots

A family living the good life in Southern California lets film cameras document what mom, dad and the five kids are up to, and the nation is shocked. The gut-punch to the collective midsection is in part because viewers witness the parents' separation and a son reveling in his cheeky, pre-gay-rights flamboyance. But it's really the sheer gall of this exhibitionist family -- the narcissism! The lack of propriety! -- that is offensive. Welcome to the reality of America circa the early 1970s, before privacy became a quaint notion and the narrow concept of oversharing meant anything more revealing than dad's account of his day at the office. The HBO movie "Cinema Verite," debuting 9 p.m. EDT Saturday, revisits that bygone era and the filming of "An American Family," PBS' series that put the affluent Santa Barbara clan of Pat and Bill Loud on display for 12 shattering episodes in 1973.

No comments: