Volume 10, Issue 1 / January 2006

Maddin X 3

In this issue

For the first issue of 2006 Offscreen sets its focus on two related subjects, the director Guy Maddin, and film comedy. The focus on Maddin begins with an in-depth interview which covers Maddin’s career and sees Maddin talk forthrightly about the impact his family history has had on his life’s work. The next two pieces on Maddin concentrate on two of his latest works, his collaborative effort with Isabella Rossellini on Roberto Rossellini, the short My Dad is 100 Years Old, and his most commercially successful feature, The Saddest Music in the World. We then veer into full-fledged comedy, with Ryan Diduck’s analysis of the hilarious and innovative Canadian TV comedy show, The Trailer Park Boys. The only entry not to deal with Canadian content is Ben Dooley’s essay “Music, comedy and class: The Immigrant and Gold Diggers of 1933.” However, Dooley’s piece fits in nicely with the other articles on several levels. For starters, Charlie Chaplin, director of The Immigrant, makes a cameo in Maddin’s My Dad is 100 Years Old, while the co-director of the other film Dooley analyzes, Busby Berkeley, happens to be one of Maddin’s favorite filmmakers. The film which Dooley considers alongside The Immigrant, Gold Diggers of 1933, is a classic Depression era musical, while The Saddest Music in the World, a ‘musical’ (in the Maddin sense), is also set during the Depression. On a more substantial level, Dooley’s essay deals directly with questions of comedy, class and culture, as do both Diduck’s essay on the The Trailer Park Boys and David Church’s essay on The Saddest Music in the World.

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