By Dennis Hartley
Robert Redford recalls in this film, “I had a place in Malibu. I was sitting there, looking out at the ocean, and this woman walks by. What it looked like to me was that she was sad. I said ‘Oh…that’s Mary Tyler Moore.’ And we’d always seen Mary Tyler Moore as this happy, upbeat, wonderful, wonderful character who was full of joy and innocence.”
Famously, what Redford saw in Moore the day of that chance encounter led to him offering her the part of the insular mother in his critically acclaimed 1980 film Ordinary People (a very un-“Mary Richards” character). This dichotomy forms the nucleus of James Adolphus’ documentary, offering an intimate glimpse at a complex woman who, while undeniably groundbreaking and influential, had her share of tragedies, personal demons, and insecurities.