MANUFACTURED LANDSCAPES SPEC D: Jennifer Baichwal. Canada. 80 min. Saturday, September 9, 3 PM ISABEL BADER THEATRE; Friday, September 15, 8 PM VARSITY 1 and 6 Rating: NNNN Rating: NNNNN
The director of Let It Come Down: The Life Of Paul Bowles and The True Meaning Of Pictures: Shelby Lee Adams' Appalachia follows photographer Edward Burtynsky to China, where he continues his artistic investigation of the large-scale industrial despoliation of nature. There's an irony inherent in Burtynsky's work. On the one hand, he documents ecological devastation. On the other, the terrific photographer finds beauty in these landscapes and is drawn to their striking colours or intriguing compositional angles.
One of the things Baichwal does in the film is give us a look at what China's industrial revolution means, and its scale is staggering. The monumental opening dolly shot through a modern factory space has an almost Godard-like grandeur.