Tuesday, 9 October 2007

Profit motive and the whispering wind

Director: John Gianvito
Country: USA

This non-fiction film documents the little-known (and often little-acknowledged) events of USA history that has more or less shaped important aspects of the nation. Dedicated to and inspired by the very important book, A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn, this narration-free documentary chronicles grave sites and shrines of the people from America's history who died fighting for what they believed was right.

Devoid of any speech, this hour-long documentary was a very elegiac piece that aims, much like Zinn's book, to inform the people of the United States the things that are not often taught in schools. It gets down to the gritty truth that, for the longest period (and it is still happening today), common people had to fight against the authorities and those in power, and often die, for basic rights. Accompanied by shots of leaves blowing in the wind, this poem dedicated to A People's History of the United States is very atmospheric, and very much achieves what it sets out to do.

This one is for people who are interesting in knowing what cannot be readily found in every history book, and is especially recommended for those in the United States. Although I haven't read it, I'd say that Howard Zinn's book would be a perfect companion.

Q&A: The Q&A session mostly involved praise for the movie, discussion about the theme and content, and questions about the stylistic choice for the film.

The movie was preceded by a short.

Director: Pedro Costa

Tarrafal is the name of an area where a concentration camp was once built by Portugal for political prisoners. This story is about Cape Verde nationals who have immigrated to Portugal but are sent back.

I didn't really understand the mysticism and politics that the film incorporates, so I couldn't really enjoy this one.

No comments: