Director: David Caesar
What does a fence mean to you? Bits of wood and concrete that distinguish one person's property from another? In this case, the definition extends further to encompass the sometimes self-imposed walls which distinguish individuals. Ingeniously and seemingly effortlessly shot, David Caesar takes us on a strange journey through the suburbs and shows us that behind each wooden fence lies a human one infinitely more impenetrable.
Narrated by Sydney University's historical anthropologist, Dr Ronald Fletcher, Fences "investigates the poetics, politics and paranoias of a personal space that starts where your skin ends and everything else begins".
David Caesar's eye for the unusual (often bordering on the bizarre) proves, like his previous films Body Work and Living Rooms, that truth really is stranger than fiction. The scary thing is that all the participants in the film could be you or me! Steven, for instance, doesn't like being in lifts, Russel imparts his theories about interpersonal communications on buses and planes while Judy has her own theories about men's behaviour in bed. What is it that makes the obvious observations of these people so interesting? Certainly it's everyone's voyeuristic nature at being let into someone's life but it is also the pin-point accuracy in which the mundane, everyday thoughts are given an individual social importance and context.
But are the fences built to keep them in or us out?