Year1988 Duration72 min. DirectorDennis O''Rourke PhotographyDennis O''Rourke EditorTim Litchfield Production Dennis O''Rourke
While the cameras snap non-stop, the tourists bargain, and Sonny and Cher sing I Got You Babe over Radio Moscow, the tribespeople in Papua New Guinea try to avoid the hordes of men and women who journey into their territory in search for an encounter with the original savage. With dry humour and acute observation, Dennis O’Rourke explores the roles of western tourists and primitive natives, the result being a caustic portraiture of modernity. For, as the film’s opening line says, “There is nothing so strange in a strange land, as the stranger who comes to visit it.” A classic of reverse ethnography.

Dennis O''Rourke

Dennis O’Rourke. Born in Brisbane, Australia, in 1945, Dennis O’Rourke went travelling in outback Australia, the Pacific Islands, and South East Asia when he was 16. During this period he worked as a farm hand, salesman, cowboy, a roughneck on oil rigs, and as a maritime seaman. He also taught himself photography and dreamt of becoming a photojournalist. Wanting to make documentary films, he moved to Sydney, where the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) employed him as an assistant gardener. He later became a cinematographer for that organisation. From 1974 until 1979 he lived in Papua New Guinea, which was in the process of decolonisation. His first film, Yumi Yet - Independence for Papua New Guinea, was widely acclaimed. Retrospectives of O’Rourke’s work have been held at Amsterdam International Documentary Film Festival, Berlin Film Festival, and the Institute of Contemporary Art in London. In 2005, Dennis O’Rourke received the Don Dunstan Award for his contribution to the Australian film industry. His many other awards include the Director’s Prize for Extraordinary Achievement at the Sundance Film Festival and the Jury Prize for Best Film at the Berlin Film Festival.
Promoted by
Gobierno de Navarra
Organized by
With the aid of
Con la financiación del Gobierno de España. Instituto de la Cinematografía y las Artes Audiovisuales Acción Cultural Española Plan de Recuperación, Transformación y Resiliencia Financiado por la Unión Europea. NexGenerationEU

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