101 minutes| U.K.| 2010| Colour| D-Cinema

This film was released 3rd December 2010, and is no longer screening.

Ever-erudite Patrick Keiller (London, Robinson in Space) uncovers England’s secret landscape and puts the current financial meltdown into historical context in his latest brilliant cinematic essay. The conceit is that we’re watching material shot by the enigmatic and unseen Robinson, well-read traveller and subversive, yet these carefully framed views of countryside and urban decay play against Vanessa Redgrave’s information-loaded commentary so that Keiller delivers an oblique yet cogent state-of-the-nation address. At times the visuals show nature going about her business, oblivious to human turmoil, yet more often they reveal the malign traces of the U.S. military-industrial complex even in bucolic Oxfordshire. As the wry narration recounts today’s financial woes, Robinson’s route also marks out a history of rebellion, in pointed contrast to our own docile acceptance of economic carnage. The sheer concentration of ideas gives us plenty to think about, yet the serene poise of Keiller’s images creates a space for contemplation and perhaps, indeed, nascent dissent. (Notes by Trevor Johnston).

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