I enjoy a good documentary. There’s so much to learn about the world around us, about the places, the things and the people. It’s truly exciting when I find out a bit of knowledge, a fun fact or a statistic that I just can’t wait to share with my family and friends. Sure they may think I’m a little whacked when I joyously tell them the volume of water spewed out by Yellowstone Park’s Old Faithful Geyser every eruption (3,700 to 8,400 gallons in case you wonder.). That’s what is fun about it, I don’t care if people think I’m weird, I just learned something! A successful documentary film gives me this exact feeling of excitement! America Stripped: Naked Las Vegas is no exception.
“America Stripped: Naked Las Vegas” is a film that documents the making of the fourth and final book in the naked series “Naked Las Vegas” by photographer Greg Friedler (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3124251/). Producer/Director and Cameraman David Palmer (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3124542/) follows Friedler as he journeys through the glamour and the evil depths of Las Vegas to find people to photograph. The formating of the book is simple. One photo of a person dressed, whether it be a suite and tie, a showgirl costume, as Elvis and even a fighting knight. Then one photo of that person naked. Straight on shot in the same pose for the most part, almost a mug shot look about the photos. Make no mistake about it, this IS NOT pornography! This is a study of how we judge people by the way they dress and look every day. You’ll see everything from successful business men and women, right down to a homeless guy. It’s interesting to realize that when seen naked…it is impossible to tell the difference between who is super successful and who is at rock bottom, in fact you may even think the roles are reversed.
As David Palmer (Hit and Run) was trying to figure out how to make a suitable ending for his film, it struck him to go back after a year and interview some of the people who were photographed. He discusses that in his telephone interview he did with Scare Stiff Reviews. See the link at bottom of this story. It is fascinating to watch this movie then go back a year later and see how the events of the world are always changing people’s lives…people seemingly at the top crashing down and people at the bottom rising above it all. (Spoiler alert))Particularly touching to me is the story of a woman who worked as a peepshow and strip club dancer. She was obviously strung out and didn’t look healthy, then one year later getting her life in order and looking unbelievably beautiful! It was very heartwarming to me.
Friedler and Palmer come together to make a great film. Friedler has three other books in the series called Naked New York, Naked Los Angeles and Naked London. If you are the type of person who likes to people watch then America Stripped is a movie you have to see. Yes it has lots of nudity, but done tastefully. It is a documentary, an artistic study and a chance to learn about many people whom you might not otherwise encounter or interact with in your lifetime. You can see that Friedler cares for the people he is photographing and even goes as far to learn more about them beyond the needs of the book and film. Learn more at the links below.
Rating: 9.5/10 – Nudity is the ultimate equalizer
Watch on Itunes:
“America Stripped: Naked Las Vegas” website:
Downloadable audio interview with Producer/Director David Palmer (Hit and Run):