Volume 13, Issue 6 / June 2009

From Hong Kong to Africa

The over-riding link among this mixed bag of essays in this issue of Offscreen is the variety of nations featured by the five essays, which collectively manage to cover four of the five world continents, excluding Australia. Asia is very well covered in Peter Rist’s report on the 33rd Hong Kong International Film Festival. This report marks Rist’s 7th Hong Kong festival coverage for Offscreen, making him the ideal person to pick up on some of the changes (both good and bad) that have occured at the festival over the years (like the increase in digital projection). South America is the main subject of Nicola Marzano’s essay that revisits the classic tenets of Third World Film Theory, “Third Cinema Today.” The essay —which marks Marzano’s first for Offscreen_— argues for an expansion of the usual Latin American context of Third World Theory to include the cinemas of Africa and the Diaspora in Great Britain (recent Black Independent Cinema). _Offscreen has rarely featured the cinema of Egypt, hence is pleased to welcome another first-time writer to Offscreen, Mustafa Mahmoud Yousry, who contributes a methodology new to Offscreen: a market analysis of the factors that influence Egyptian audiences’ movie choices. The results are intriguing and reveal similarities to North American viewers. Europe and North American is covered by Seung-hoon Jeong (also new to Offscreen) in his fascinating study of the theme of “postmorten” life (Darwinism, naturalism, biology, etc.) as manifested in the fake documentaries of British Peter Greenaway and the experimental found footage films of American Bill Morrison. Europe and North American rub shoulders again in the final essay by Donato Totaro, which analyzes American Joseph W. Sarno’s European co-produced (Sweden/Switzerland/West Germany) lesbian vampire cult film, Vampire’s Ecstasy. (Donato Totaro, ed.)

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