In this World

In this World

2004world1600.jpg‘In this World’ was another very interesting documentary where somehow I was compelled to watch it to the end. The story of the boys journey was what captured me. The way in which the director used the various dialogue and visuals was I think by international standards a little shaky. Apparently the director won some numerous awards for his work and yet the documentary did not strike me as ‘award’ material.Something that struck me from the beginning was how the director managed to get me to think about the differences between cultures, especially Western vs Eastern. He did this without even using any visuals. It was just in the way he told the story. The director took the viewers on a journey, a road trip if you will, through the hardships that this boy had to face in order to make as his father put it “a better life for himself”. This again without visuals shows the hardships that eastern cultures have to face in order for their families to succeed in life.

Another element that struck me quite odd was the use of actors and normal civilians. Who were actors and who were civilians? Half way through the documentary I wondered to myself how the camera- man could get so close without being apprehended by the guards then I heard someone in the group say that some people are actors and some aren’t. Again I wondered who was acting and who was really doing their job. This did not become clear throughout the whole documentary. It was almost as if the director wanted the viewer to be so captured by the events that they would have to make up their own minds.

The use of visuals at times was very interesting. For instance: there were lots of long camera sequences of trucks and car shots signaling long journeys. This is a very good technique to show the viewer that they are travelling a long distance without actually mentioning it.

The title struck me only as the documentary progressed as in my own opinion meaning that we all live in this world. ‘Why are some people lucky enough to be priviledged just because they were born in a certain country’. The documentary I think came across with that sort of tenacity by commenting on this statement. Why does this boy from Afghanistan have to struggle and travel so far in order to make a better life for himself, just because he was born in a different country. The world is ‘messed’ up in that way.

Otherwise on the whole it was a long but very captivating documentary which at some points could have been done a little better with regards to keeping viewers glued to the screen. I feel that the message was indeed very strong but it did not come across like that. Normal viewers in their living room might not have got the distinction that the director was trying to make.

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