RELEASE DATE: June 23
DIRECTORS: Albert Maysles, Lynn True, David Usul, Nelson Walker III, Benjamin Wu
If you truly love documentary film, you’ll probably get a little choked up when the words “A Film by Albert Maysles” come up at the beginning of In Transit, appearing for the last time on a feature film. And Maysles’ style and voice were so firmly entrenched that maybe you could’ve said this about whatever his last work turned out to be, but In Transit feels a particularly apt final entry in his filmography, encapsulating much of what was great about his work: hanging out, listening, and discovering truth. This time, Maysles and his coterie of co-directors find themselves on Amtrak’s Empire Builder train, running from the Midwest to Northwest, filled with people getting away, starting over, looking forward, thinking back. Sometimes we come in on the middle of the story, and it doesn’t matter much; we know these stories, or can guess at them, because they sound like our own, since we’re all in some sort of transition, trying to find a new home, or going back where we belong. “I’m so excited to be almost home,” says a girl near the end, and maybe it’s just the way he frames her, or where he places that moment, but there’s a profundity to her words that’s overwhelming. What a glorious, perfect conclusion to a remarkable career.