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Robinson in Space, Documentary, 1997 IMDB

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dsl SX

2015-03-26 00:00

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A very unusual documentary, a sort of travelogue around England (and a very brief interlude to N France) in the style of an 18th century traveller such as Defoe, but visiting ports, factories, prisons, mines, arhitecture, shopping centres, MoD sites, industrial estates, bridges, castles, stately homes, detention centres, famous birthplaces and whatever else. Everything is static camera sequences, with a deadpan commentary read by Paul Scofield in a monotone which becomes almost hypnotic as it constantly produces obscure and apparently random facts and comment - social, historic, financial, political, literary etc - against some striking imagery which makes mundanity become fascinating.

Part 2 of a loose trilogy with /movie_110377-London.html and /movie.php?id=1714893 .

I think it is amazing, and definitely recommend it to anyone who likes something different - but most people would probably just wonder WTF it was all about. Two quotes online "Loosely based on the travels of Daniel Defoe, this documentary comes pretty close to defining what it is to be British, and is unlike any other film I have ever seen" and ".... I love how there seems to be no plot - till suddenly there is...". A couple of extracts - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=crVFU-5B6fs , https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Noa7i9qqq3c . But the power of the film is through watching it from the start and the sudden realisation midway through that all this apparent meandering comes together as an incisive analysis of what England was in the 90s and how it operated then - and still does now. It's not an English Koyaanisqatsi but shares some of that approach of building a big portrait from small insights.

Lots of photos just to enjoy/absorb/admire and give a flavour of the film
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The site of the Morris Cowley factory, part demolished in 1993
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The brief French interlude - not really sure why they did it:
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The white phone-boxes of Kingston-on-Hull
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dsl SX

2015-03-26 00:03

Planes for impdb
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Corkeyandpals US

2016-03-01 20:26

Aircraft at: http://impdb.org/index.php?title=Robinson_in_Space

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