Volume 8, Issue 5 / May 2004

Focus on the Documentary

In this issue

This month Offscreen puts a spotlight on the documentary, thanks largely to New Zealand correspondent Sándor Lau, who reports on the 2004 Australian International Documentary Conference. It may be Australia, but much of his account is extremely relevant for documentarists the world over, especially for a country, Canada, whose national film tradition is so deeply steeped in the documentary. Lau also presents an account of his journey as a film student and first-time documentary maker walking 500km from Auckland to Cape Reinga, New Zealand’s spiritual tip, to make his documentary, Behaviours of the Backpacker. Continuing along Lau’s cultural exploration is Daniel Garrett’s in-depth essay on a group of recent theatrical releases that have in common characters or themes whose cultural origin is other than the filmmaker’s. Garrett’s essay thoughfully negotiates the critical dilemma of assessing cultural meaning(s) in cinema. Rounding out the issue is a review essay of a recent book on the Film Noir and a look at the lasting intertextuality of the re-released Band à parte (Jean-Luc Godard 1964). (ed. Donato Totaro)

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