Mike Nichols: The Invisible Director

RIP Mike Nichols, the Invisible Director.

His touch was so subtle that it’s hard to pin down what really makes a Mike Nichols movie (save the fact that they’re critically acclaimed – The Graduate, Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Closer). His favorite genre seemed to be “people trying really hard to be the ideal versions of themselves.” He was content to let great writing and great performances shine without any bells and whistles. No need to promote the storyteller’s brand when the story was what mattered.

For me, The Birdcage is the best example of Nichols’ tender and practical eye. He centered his actors, let the camera rest at eye level, and let Robin Williams and Nathan Lane talk around love.

Mike Nichols – thanks for bringing real humanity to the big screen for nearly 50 years.