Director: Mark Cousins

A 15 part documentary series (More 4 (UK)

The FINAL Parts & Series Overview

Follow link for review of parts 1-3

Follow link for review of parts 4 -9

The Story Of Film. 15 parts at over an hour a time to explain Mark Cousin’s view on what makes film through the ages. Well in the end he can KEEP IT! This was nothing more than an self-indulgent exercise in glorifying his view of film without any real or significant detached view point.

He failed to look at the Epics, Science Fiction, Horror or Romantic Comedies, or any of the interesting or major technical innovations beyond those involving camera work and direction, even though he insisted throughout that his programme was about little else.

He did spend an inordinate amount of screen time discussing, for example a film about a near naked make, climbing a tower and entering a portal into some sort of Zen chamber with a naked chick, a tiger and a religious guru, who explains that if he defecates into a bowl it will turn to gold, with many a deep implication! Where was The Empire Strikes Back? The brilliant adaptation of from book to screen of Lord Of The Rings or Harry Potter? Writing seemed to be overlooked as well as almost everything else.

The series ended up just focussing on his favourite films from around the world with a few nods to the mainstream to keep us happy, well it didn’t! In 15 hours I would have expected a detailed and broad history of film from the early innovations, which were covered well in the early episodes, to the major developments and failures such as the many widescreen formats including the epic Cinerama and the successful Imax, 3D fads and the innovations in sound.

I ended up treating this as a film class but as it went on I found my interest was almost destroyed by his teadious tone and ever increasingly boring and indulgent subjects. And all this was summed up with the epilogue, the future of film and the seemingly random year of 2046.

He begins top postulate the future of film which seems to only have two options according the great Mark Cousins. One is that we will dream films…? Well that was I got from his shoe horning of Inception into it, whilst ignoring Christopher Nolan’s greater works, such as Memento and The Dark Knight. The other was that film will be banned and we will have to remember them until such time as they are viewed again…

Okay thanks for that up beat hypothesis though I feel that there is little reason to postulate that the future of film is doomed any more that it isn’t. I have honestly NEVER seen a worse and more disturbingly pointless film documentary and the final rating of 2/10 is only so high due to the few early episodes that offered some interesting insight and hope for  a decent series but in the end it became such a disappointment, that I would,  given the freedom to ignore these early pluses, have given this 1/10 without a doubt.



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