Film-watcher/scholar/teacher/writer. Film PhD student at University of Southampton. Specialising in #documentary.
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Elizabeth Lo’s documentary provides a snapshot of social deprivation in Istanbul from a dog’s eye view. Deapite the legal protection strays enjoy in Turkey, the film draws stark parallels between the day-to-day trials of finding food and shelter, and the momentary joys of play fighting with pals and chasing cats. Indeed, STRAY makes a useful companion piece to KEDI (2016) which documented the feline inhabitants of the city. The most persuasive and powerful scenes in Lo’s film however are the bonds struck between her four-legged subjects and a group of Syrian migrants who are equally homeless and fighting for survival.
The first film in Davies' trilogy introduces the key themes which will inflect most of his autobiographical work: homosexual awakening; repressive Catholicism; dysfunctional family life and loneliness. 'Children' emerges as a metaphysical journey of Robbie Tucker's solitary school life, bullied and forgotten. This merges with him seen as a young man. He is awkward and guarded and his traumatic childhood, involving the death of his violent father, has left him unable to form social connections. It is a restrained, poetic film of deep feeling.