The lives, careers and decades-long friendship between legendary author Robert Caro and legendary editor Robert Gottlieb is examined in the deeply-engaging, warm-spirited documentary, "Turn Every Page."
Robert Caro was a reporter when he wrote the book that would launch him towards his famed, Pulitzer Prize-winning career. That book was the 1974 "The Power Broker," a biograph of New York businessman and urban planner, Robert Moses. That book, like hundreds that would follow and that would define the last half-century of literature in America, was edited by Robert Gottlieb.
Caro, now 87, and Gottlieb, now 91, are the sort of partners and lifelong friends that would never use that word - "friend" - to describe their working relationship. They're relationship has been contentious - or worse - at times throughout the years, but their love, affection and admiration for one another is undeniable.
The film gives us tremendous access to two men who reluctantly talk about their incredible careers. This access is granted because the film's director, Lizzie, just so happens to be Robert Gottlieb's daughter. This angle not only makes this film possible, but it adds a loving quality to the approach of this story, working not only to spotlight the friendship between the two titans of literature, but in framing it in a way that puts into context just what they have meant to the world at-large, and to one another.
"Turn Every Page" is doubly-fascinating for anyone who has ever written anything...it's a masterclass of sorts as we get to peek into the minds of both a brilliant writer and the man who edits this brilliance to make it even more brilliant.
They may start the film off jabbing at one another (Caro agrees to be interviewed only if Robert Gottlieb is not in the same room as him), but their love and friendship is palpable and permeates the screen. I'm sure this isn't the typical relationship between a writer and his/her editor (as I can attest to personally), but that's just another element as to why the partnership of Caro and Gottlieb is so special and deserving of celebration, such as this film so genuinely accomplishes.
Run Time: 1 hour 52 minutes.
Featuring: Robert Caro, Robert Gottlieb, Bill Clinton, Ethan Hawke, Conan O'Brien.
Directed by Lizzie Gottlieb ("Romeo Romeo," "Today's Man").
"Turn Every Page" is in limited theatrical release on Friday, February 17th, 2023.
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