Smash His Camera Reviews
Galella comes to some fame because of his dogged pursuit of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. His antics are comic and apparently somewhat legendary even by paparazzi standards. Eventually things come to a boiling point and Kennedy sues her stalker (it's hard to call it anything other than stalking).
There's an interesting point in the movie where Galella reflects on why he was so obsessed with Jacqueline Kennedy . Watching him process his own obsession makes for a classic movie moment - largely because he seems blissfully unaware of his obsession until he actually thinks about it and he certainly seems very unaware of the discomfort he has caused her. Why did he follow Jacqueline so incessantly? His answer; he was lonely. Of course he doesn't say it like this, he says he didn't have a girlfriend at the time and that he was infatuated with Kennedy. But really it boils down to loneliness. If the movie is to be believed Could it be that we obsess over celebrities not because we are morbidly curious but because we are lonely? And that in that loneliness we hope to be known by some celebrity who will never know our name? Do we want to be known by those who are beautiful and appealing?
Smash His Camera is certainly an entertaining documentary especially for those who are familiar with the history of Hollywood. Galella is a compelling character - I would even argue likeable (although not everyone will agree with this). Smash His Camera is worth a watch. But I'm a little more interested in the questions it provokes.
People in his camp are a bit delusional in regard to Ms Onasis. Making statements implying that the interaction with Ron was in fact a relationship through the lens.
jackie made it very clear she didn't appreciate Ron's. He even says he didn't have a girlfriend at the time, so Jackie was kind of like his girlfriend. NO, she was the subject of you photograph.
Friends of Ron's talked about how Ron cared for Jackie & her children & wouldn't ever harm them.
To Jackie Ron is a stranger, following her, photographing her & her children.
There's also criticism from a real blowhard forget his name and a photographer from Sport Illustrated, who agrees that Ron's pictures capture great moments, but argues that the appeal is the subject, and it doesn't make any difference who photographed Liz Taylor.
I'm sure this guy would want credit for all the pictures he's taken of famous athletes.
I bet he considers many of the images art.
I abhor celebrity journalism, but I have to give Ron Galella a little respect if for nothing else that he found a way to lawfully make money doing something he loves (even if it is strange and kind of creepy). The real schmucks are the publishers who buy his photos. People complain about the paparazzi, but in all fairness, they wouldn't be doing what they are doing if there wasn't money to be made. And celebrity pictures sell...a lot.
And I do have to admit that some of his pictures were quite entertaining, especially after hearing him tell the stories behind them.
Galella had an approach to his work and its simply get the shot no matter what the cost ,you may not approve of his methods and the monster he helped to create , but his photos are quite unique and it sets them high above the usual pap shots.
The stories behind some of the pics are interesting too ,most notably the one of Jackie Onassis crossing a New York street and caught off guard ,and Marlon Brando busting Galellas jaw to avoid having his picture taken.
Gallelas archive is stuffed to the brim with classy photos and by the end of the film you cant help but liking Ron despite the fact he will do anything even bribe people to get that all important shot..
An important film which leaves you asking questions about celebrity and privacy .