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Wednesday, 28 May 2014 00:00

Reflections of Spring...

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Antarctic curiosity... Antarctic curiosity...

Yesterday afternoon, after coming home I turned the television in my kitchen on and I discovered, quite by accident, that "Geo Magazine" (RAI Tre – Italian National Television) was broadcasting a documentary I made a few years ago, entitled "75° Latitude South".
Indeed, what was going on the air was my first documentary produced in Antarctica for EREBUS Productions and with my first underwater images shot under the polar ice cap.

Bob Camera nel ghiaccio-WM

A documentary I have always been proud of and to which my career as fillmmaker owes a lot.
I looked at him a bit surprised and quite interested because it was a long time I did not see it and while the scenes followed one other on the screen, I was always more to think about that this shot was not right, the text in that situation was too descriptive, that cut was little fluid, this transition was inappropriate, my prsence in video was a bit too amateur etc. etc.
In other words, nowadays, with the experience gained in recent years and with a technical background on my shoulders certainly much greater, I would do it in a completely different way...

Bob filma Antartide 1-WM

But then I stopped to ponder a bit and I thought: "If a RAI's major program as "Geo & Geo" , which has an archive of thousands of Italian and international documentaries, decides to air "75° Latitude South!" one more time after almost 5 years after its first airing, probably it is not so bad".
And things are just like that!
This documentary, in fact, albeit sometimes "candid" and a little "naive" from a technical point of view (both in terms of direction, shooting and authorial part), however was able to convey all the emotion and the excitement of a boy who, having always daydreamed to explore the South Pole, finally arrives in Antarctica and has the opportunity to experience a whole range of unique adventures with Weddell seals, emperor penguins, Adelie penguins and even with fish and marine invertebrates that inhabit the ocean depths beneath 3 meters of pack-ice.

Bob filma Weddell seals 1-WM

This is its real strength. And maybe, adding too many "technical filters" (which today probably I would use...), all this excitement, even if a little childlike, would not be able to jump off the screen.
Clearly this is not to say that we do not have to treat every aspect of the production with the utmost care: in "75° Latitude South" there are very good shots, some – I dare say - amazing and no obvious technical error. Because errors can never be justified.
Instead, I mean to encourage anyone who feels sure of his technical knowledge to fully let himself being involved by the story he is telling with his video camera, without being harnessed by too many conceptual formalisms.

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