by Cavalcanti, Alberto

Film: 35mm 1935

other: see notes

Unconventional documentary showing the importance of the work of the British miner. "Having worked within the ambit of the French avant garde of the 20s, Cavalcanti turned to the possibilities of sound when he joined the GPO Film Unit. In this context, much of the interest of Coalface lies in its soundtrack an articulation of recitation, chant, music and commentary with images of coalmining. Although direct address to the spectator is present in the form of spoken commentary, the effect of such address with regard to the fixation of meaning is repeatedly unbdercut by the rhythmic intonation of the commentary itself, the play on the relationship between spoken word and image, and their occasional overdetermination by other elements of the soundtrack." Annette Kuhn 1977

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Funder: GPO Film Unit; (Britten/Auden/Coldstream)


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