Monday, April 10

Frederick Wiseman: The Filmmaker Who Shows Us Ourselves

"One of the most important and original filmmakers working today, Frederick Wiseman has been making documentaries for 50 years. His movies are about specific places — institutions, organizations, cities and communities: the New York neighborhood of Jackson Heights; the coastal town of Belfast, Me.; the Alabama Institute for the Deaf and Blind; American Ballet Theater; the National Gallery in London. What interests Mr. Wiseman is how these institutions reflect the larger society and what they reveal about human behavior. His documentaries can be long. The three- and four-hour running times might seem forbidding, but there is rarely a dull moment, in spite of the absence of conventional narrative. Very quickly, you find yourself absorbed in patterns and details as meaning emerges mosaic-like, surfacing moment by moment, encounter by encounter, in bodies and faces alone and in groups. ..."
NY Times (Video)
W - Frederick Wiseman
Zipporah Films
The Paris Review - Frederick Wiseman: The Tawdry Gruesomeness of Reality
An Interview With Frederick Wiseman
NY Times: Framing the Viewers, and the Viewed (Video)
NY Times: Jackson Heights Through the Eyes of Frederick Wiseman
New Yorker: Finding the American Ideal in Queens