Sunday, September 14, 2008
I enjoyed American Photography: A Century of Images a lot more than i thought i would. I've seen many films on history that used pictures a way to tell the story, but this film trumped them all. This film used photos as the story rather than support, like the segment on Vietnam. I think it was Vietnam in four photos, all of which told the story of Vietnam without using chapters and chapters in a book.
The general theme of the film to me seemed to be photos are the most powerful medium of history and emotion. Photos could capture a single moment in time a moment in time that told more than any video or story could tell. Like the monk who lit himself on fire in protest, if you just heard a story about the monk you would think it crazy and horrific but probably forget about it shortly. When a photo is taken of such an event and a person sees it, it is forever burned into their minds, or at least I will never forget the image.
The film in has had a real impact on the way I view photography, giving me a real appreciation of American photography.