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A unique practice
David MacDougall

nor telling me what to think about them. It was made from the viewpoint of someone who had actually been there. Today I consider observational filmmaking to be a unique documentary film practice. It produces films that differ from most of the other documentary films that we see. It differs also in more subtle ways from similar approaches like Direct Cinema and cinéma-vérité , for it does one thing the others do not do. Instead of focusing exclusively on its subject, it puts the process of finding out

in The art of the observer
A practical handbook
Author:

This handbook is intended for those wanting to use documentary filmmaking as a research method to explore subjects and also as a way of expressing ideas. Its focus is practical rather than technical, aiming to complement the many handbooks that already exist covering filmmaking, digital videography, sound recording and video editing. It concentrates on aspects of filmmaking for research purposes at an introductory level that are not so well documented elsewhere, such as the practical stages involved in the production of an ethnographic film. The underlying principal of this handbook is to broaden the application of ethnographic filmmaking to suit a wide range of research areas and documentary expression, encompassing sensory, fictive, observational, participatory, reflexive, performative and immersive modes of storytelling. I have chosen to avoid detailed discussion of technology as this dates quickly. This handbook aims to assist individuals in their personalised searches using online facilities to develop research methods and also teaching, by decoding technical terminology and explaining filmmaking workflows.

Heather Norris Nicholson

willing and able to engage in such debates. Such polemics linked publications and possibly boosted sales too. Watson’s remarks aptly described much amateur activity, but it would be unfair to overlook those films that did explore contemporary society. Watson’s wake-up call for more socially engaged filmmaking was not new. 2 Since the mid-1920s, some filmmakers had tackled topical concerns in factual and

in Amateur film
From Le Raïd to Jeunesse dorée
Carrie Tarr

The first years of the new millennium provide an opportunity for assessing how beur filmmaking has developed since the flourishing of the banlieue film in 1995 and the surprise success of Djamel Bensalah’s Le Ciel , les oiseaux … et ta mère in 1999. Since 2000, there has been an increase in the number of beur filmmakers – Kamel Saleh, Karim Abbou (born in 1968 in Puteaux), Kader Ayd (born in 1976 in Nanterre), Rabah Ameur

in Reframing difference
Derek Gladwin

4 Documentary map-making and film-making in Pat Collins’s Tim Robinson: Connemara Derek Gladwin A map is a sustained attempt upon an unattainable goal, the complete comprehension by an individual of a tract of space that will be individualized into a place by that attempt.1 – Tim Robinson In sum a film is a map, and … its symbolic and political effectiveness is a function of its identity as a cartographic diagram.2 – Tom Conley Documenting through map-making and film-making In the documentary film Tim Robinson: Connemara (2011), director Pat Collins spotlights

in Unfolding Irish landscapes
Open Access (free)
James Baldwin on My Shoulder, Part Two
Karen Thorsen

Filmmaker Karen Thorsen gave us James Baldwin: The Price of the Ticket, the award-winning documentary that is now considered a classic. First broadcast on PBS/American Masters in August, 1989—just days after what would have been Baldwin’s sixty-fifth birthday—the film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 1990. It was not the film Thorsen intended to make. Beginning in 1986, Baldwin and Thorsen had been collaborating on a very different film project: a “nonfiction feature” about the history, research, and writing of Baldwin’s next book, “Remember This House.” It was also going to be a film about progress: about how far we had come, how far we still have to go, before we learn to trust our common humanity. But that project ended abruptly. On 1 December 1987, James Baldwin died—and “Remember This House,” book and film died with him. Suddenly, Thorsen’s mission changed: the world needed to know what they had lost. Her alliance with Baldwin took on new meaning. The following memoir—the second of two serialized parts—explores how and why their collaboration began. The first installment appeared in the sixth volume of James Baldwin Review, in the fall of 2020; the next stage of their journey starts here.

James Baldwin Review
Fetish Filmmaking and the Revision of Masculinity in Scorpio Rising and Drive
Rebecca Sheehan

This article examines how the ironic construction of queer masculinity from biker culture, a realm of consumer fetishism and hetero-masculinity, in Kenneth Anger’s Scorpio Rising (1964), influences Nicolas Winding Refn’s 2011 film Drive. As Anger’s film appropriates pop-culture images and icons of biker culture, fetishes of post-Second World War American masculinity, Refn uses overt references to Anger’s film to wage a similar reappropriation of muscle car culture, in the process challenging contemporary images of heterosexual masculinity in Drive. Like Anger, Refn relies upon the dynamics of fetishism and postmodernism’s illumination of the distance between sign and object to subvert muscle cars’ associations with masculine violence and rivalry, mobilising them instead to exploit the inherent multivocality of the fetishised object, seizing the car (and its mobility) as a getaway vehicle to escape prescriptions of identity and limiting definitions of gender and sexuality.

Film Studies
Abstract only
The Position of Women in Post-War Japanese Cinema (Kinema Junpō, 1961)
Alejandra Armendáriz-Hernández
and
Irene González-López

In contrast to the canonical history of cinema and film theory, often dominated by academic texts and Western and/or male voices, this article presents a casual conversation held in 1961 between four of the most influential women in the post-war Japanese film industry: Kawakita Kashiko,,Yamamoto Kyōko, Tanaka Kinuyo and Takamine Hideko. As they openly discuss their gendered experience in production, promotion, distribution and criticism, their thoughts shed light on the wide range of opportunities available to women in filmmaking, but also on the professional constraints,and concerns which they felt came along with their gender. Their conversation reveals how they measured themselves and their national industry in relation to the West; at times unaware of their pioneer role in world cinema. This piece of self-reflexive criticism contributes to existing research on both womens filmmaking and the industry of Japanese cinema, and invites us to reconsider non-hegemonic film thinking practices and voices.

Film Studies
On Reading a Sequence in Godard‘s Pierrot le fou
Daniel Morgan

This paper is organised around an analysis of a short sequence from Godard‘s Pierrot le fou (1965). Although the sequence appears to be a series of repetitions, close analysis reveals it to be a single event presented in a carefully fragmented order. This unexpected fact generates questions about how to account for the relation between our initial beliefs about the organisation of the sequence and our knowledge of its actual structure. We come to see, in an intimate way, that reflection on the way we watch and understand film is one of the central themes of Godard‘s filmmaking.

Film Studies
Chiao-I Tseng

The recent uses of digital technology in war films have sparked a wave of discussions about new visual aesthetics in the genre. Drawing on the approach of film discourse analysis, this article critically examines recent claims about new visual grammar in the war film and investigates to what extent the insertion of different media channels has affected the persuasive function of the genre. Through a detailed analysis of Redacted (2007), which constitutes an extreme case of a fiction filmmaking use of a variety of digital channels, this article demonstrates that the multimedia format works within systems of classical film discourse while also generating new patterns of persuasion tied to new visual technology.

Film Studies