Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Capital Celluloid 2015 - Day 72: Fri Mar 13

Go Tell It To The Judge (Barraclough, 1977): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 6.20pm


This is one of the films from the season devoted to documentary filmmaker Jenny Barraclough at BFI Southbank.

Here is the BFI introduction:
Jenny Barraclough learned her craft on two TV series that broke the mould – Granada’s tough, investigative World In Action and BBC’s ‘human interest’ series Man Alive. During the 70s she was continually drawn to those who battled for justice against those in power, and the heroic ‘little people’ caught up in world crises. It’s clear that she delighted in irreverence – whether sharing a telling, intimate moment in the life of an Indian movie star, or observing Mrs Thatcher in her kitchen. In 1989 Barraclough set up a production company with BBC producer George Carey, through which she made, among others, The Plague (RTS Best Documentary Series), Lost Civilizations (Best Series Emmy), and Frontiers (Best series ACE). Above all, Barraclough’s films are deeply humane and demonstrate two constants – support for those who fall through the cracks, and a talent for finding the humour beneath big stories.

Tonight's films are Go Tell It To The Judge: A small group of residents from a remote Pacific island travel to London to seek justice as their home is literally being mined from under them. This extraordinary inside story of the longest and most expensive case in British legal history had such impact that it actually altered the outcome of the case, and includes one of the first attempts at reconstruction within the documentary genre.

... and Iron In The Soul: Presented by Stuart Hall, this powerful film with a wonderfully rich cast of characters tells the dramatic history of the English Caribbean and the mixed legacy of the British Empire. It includes an early planter’s scandalous diary detailing his sexual exploits and brutal methods of punishment; the little-known story of the poor whites known as ‘the Redlegs’; and the famous cricketer who took the world by storm and beat his old master.

Here (and above) is an extract from Barraclough's Man Alive film on Hyde Park.

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