SEBASTIAN SPEAKS BLOG
Saw Frederick Wiseman’s latest documentary “Boxing Gym” last night and it reminded me of just what a national treasure he is. He manages to make documentaries that rely solely on brilliant editing and patient observance, no need for didactic narration, intrusive “mood” music, strategically arranged interviews, or mish-mash collages of stock footage. Documentaries are by far my favorite form of film, and Wiseman has been the quiet master for the better part of half a century. I love Ophuls, but he makes himself part of the story, (much like his avowed disciple Michael Moore). I remain spellbound by Errol Morris, but after “The Thin Blue Line” he felt the need to rely on the ultra-stylized approach.
Wiseman should be as well known as the Maysles Brothers but he has chosen to remain largely in the shadows, continually making sublime portraits of everyday life in America, sometimes disturbing, sometimes humorous, but always searingly honest.
My friend Maxime uploaded this interesting video on women in Iran, obviously pre 1979. Wish I could understand!
Been away for awhile. Not really hibernating but not spending a lot of time on the computer. What better way to come back to the forum than with these films demonstrating the magic of sound?