This film is considered ground breaking in the documentary genre and has gained iconic status. In two continuous takes, a woman
sitting in a chair tells a story about the purchase of a dress — twice. First, Betty describes how she needed “the perfect dress” for a very
special occasion and humorously explains in detail how she found just the right one, spent more than she could afford for it, modeled it for
admiring friends, felt absolutely transformed and then…never got to wear it. Then Betty is asked to tell her story again, but this time the story is strikingly different. While the facts remain the same, Betty reveals her anxiety over buying the dress, her discomfort at being praised for beauty she feels she doesn’t have, and her disappointment at losing the rare opportunity to be “beautiful.” The contrast between the two stories reveals her deeper feeling about herself and her place in the world.