Spotlight On: Adam Curtis

Ok the first in a new series of Spotlight On. These will look at people who, for whatever reason, have caught my interest. First up the inexplicable and inexplicably brilliant Adam Curtis.

Adam Curtis returns to the BBC on the 23 May with his new series, ‘All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace’. For anyone reading who doesn’t know who Adam Curtis or why a documentary maker is featuring on a theatre blog then the good ol’ folks at the BBC have put the whole of ‘It Felt Like A Kiss’ on the website (http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/adamcurtis/it_felt_like_a_kiss/). This sublime montage work was created in collaboration with Punchdrunk as part of the Manchester Festival.

It Felt Like A Kiss marks a more explicitly artistic approach to serious documentary film making than Curtis has subsequently produced and ‘All Watched Over…’ appears to be a continuation of this approach (a short taster can be seen here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/tv-and-radio/2011/may/06/adam-curtis-computers-documentary). In the clip Curtis seems to be continuing with his experimentations in montage and discordant sounds rather than delivering a straight narrative (in the style of Dispatches or Panorama). The ongoing use of film clips, archive news footage and interview in juxtaposition may be regarded as pretentious by some but this underestimates the scale of what Curtis is attempting.

Curtis’ documentaries are… continue reading here

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