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The Is/Land

USA, 1981 (MIFF 1982, The Avant-Garde)

Director: Michael Oblowitz, David Goldberg

An 'anti documentary', it investigates the formal apparatus through which language and meaning are made and communicated in documentary cinema and television The film applies an ideological position — an analysis of South Africa through the metaphor of Robben Island, a maximum security prison there — to a pluralistic interpretation of the formal possibilities of representing that position Language, understood as a mode of political control, is analyzed simultaneously as a means for controlling the viewer of the documentary in relation to the information such a film imparts Within this analysis, the film uses video and super 8mm, as well as the 16mm format in conjunction with natural and artificial languages (e g , logic), to develop its argument

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