For a man who has made a career out of making the famous more famous, Anton Corbijn seems to find it difficult to deal with being in the limelight himself, as the new documentary “Anton Corbijn: Inside Out” shows us.
This documentary film by Dutch filmmaker Klaartje Quirijns portrays a solitary man who is deeply immersed in his work, not so much a workaholic but more someone who has a true passion for the work he does, and does so well.
Shot over a three year period, Quirijns turns the camera back on the photographer, video director and now filmmaker and explores his remarkable career as one of the most prolific music photographers of our time.
Through interviews with bands he’s previously worked with, such as Arcade Fire and Depeche Mode, the filmmaker builds up Corbijn’s professional standing, and one of the compliments we hear comes from Bono, who says that he hopes one day to become the person that Corbijn manages to capture in his portraits.
An image is created of someone who is not fazed by fame but understands and identifies with what Corbijn himself calls “the pain of creation”. He draws out the best in people and doesn’t shoot before that best has been revealed.
A vicar’s son
The film is not merely a slide show of interviews with the rich and famous though, other aspects of the artist’s life are also highlighted. Quirijns wants to show the audience where Corbijn’s motivation and drive comes from, what has made the man who he is today?
The solitary attitude, it seems, was always there. His brother and sister confirm the photographer’s own statement that he has always been a loner and paint a picture of a child who rebelled against his father (a vicar) but at the same time sought his approval.
With his mother Corbijn has a good relationship and it is during a long chat with her that a revealing, painful but beautiful and tender story comes to light.