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December 1993


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"Harriet E. Margolis" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 28 Dec 1993 14:36:12 +1200
text/plain (51 lines)
>  Robert Withers <[log in to unmask]>  writes:
>> For my introductory film course for undergraduate education majors (paired
>> with an education course on literacy and whole language) I tried showing
>> "Sherman's March" as an example of a kind of direct first person film that
>> connects the personal and the political.  The problem is, the film is
>> about a half-hour too long and bogs down too much at first with an
>> extended profile of a would-be actress who is not very sympathetic.  So
>> many of the students didn't connect.
        Ouch.  It pains me to hear this, both because, as a Tar Heel (as is
McElwee) SHERMAN'S MARCH _does_ speak to me, and because I'm currently
planning to show it in our department's intro Hist & Crit course.
        However, it may get booted for a female-produced (dir is Merata
Mita) Maori film--either a feature-length fiction or documentary.  (Haven't
had a chance to see these choices: It's true, NZ does shut down for the
holidays, so I can't get access to available copies.)
I'm trying to come up with other
>> first person films that might work better with this class, which is
>> mostly female.     Andre Codrescu's film seems too guarded and
>> sensational, Spalding Grey's terrific films are a bit sensationalist,
>> sophisticated and egoistic, and the same goes for "My Dinner with Andre."
>> Besides that these are all heavily invested in a certain kind of macho
>> exhibitionism.
(Which is entertaining, but makes the presentation more
>> important than the content.)    Can anyone help me with other films in
>> this genre, especially films by women?  Any that deal with issues of
>> politics, race, ethnicity?
>> Thanks,                                                    Robert
                If the Maori material sounds of interest, ask me about them
in a couple of weeks.  Then we can explore their availability in the
States.  Merata Mita, it may help to know, appears as an entry in _The
Women's Companion to International Film_.
>  It is something of a stretch, but you might consider TONGUES UNTIED.  It
>is a collaboration, but it's clear that the film belongs to Marlon Riggs,
>and he is certainly out front in it.  Not "first person," in the sense that
>SHERMAN'S MARCH is, but perhaps close enough.          PJO
        TONGUES UNTIED is wonderful, but it is likely to pose problems,
given its subject matter.  It's certainly poetic, but not obviously first
Dr Harriet Margolis
Department of Theatre & Film
Victoria University of Wellington
P.O.Box 600 Wellington, New Zealand.
Telephone 64-4 4715359,  Facsimile 64-4 4955090