When we heard that Drew Barrymore had snapped up the rights to Grey Gardens -- the documentary about Edith Bouvier Beale and her daughter, Little Edie, living in horrifying squalor in otherwise posh East Hampton, N.Y., much to the shame of cousin Jackie O. Kennedy -- it gave us pause, to say the least.
We don't have anything against Ms. Barrymore (though we hope she got a nice beach house out of Fever Pitch and 50 First Dates, to make them worthwhile), but David and Albert Maysles' Grey Gardens is, quite simply, the best documentary ever, you understand. The headscarves! The years of simmering mother-daughter resentment! The cooking corn in a pot next to your bed! The cats crapping on your priceless oil paintings! We didn't want Hollywood to turn it into a big, colorful trifle full of lessons and whimsy, thereby missing the point entirely.
But we just saw the trailer and -- while we did whiff some lessons toward the end -- we guess we're going to have to get HBO now. We could watch Drew as Little Edie, Jessica Lange as her mother, and Jeanne Tripplehorn as Jackie O. all day long (but we'll have to wait for April 18, just like everybody else). So well-played, Ms Barrymore. Very well played.