Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Alessandro Cavadini and Carolyn Strachan

Two Laws (1982), by Alessandro Cavadini and Carolyn Strachan, was an unusual collaborative project in which two outsider filmmakers worked with the Booroloola Aboriginal Community in the Northern Territory of Australia. (The two laws of the title refer to "whitefella law" and Aboriginal law.) The film's four sections provide a consensus version of decades of Booroloola struggle against Australian police violence, cruel social policy, and unfair land usurpation. Cavadini and Strachan structure the piece as a mix of observation and re-enactment. The film's leisurely pace warmly invites the viewer to feel completely at home with the Booroloola community. The camerawork (by Cavadini; sound is by Strachan, third still) is all done with a wide-angle lens, emphasizing the high degree of participation and consent: everyone gets to be seen and heard.
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Documentary Starts Here by Nancy Kalow is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.