Land of Look Behind

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Culture Documentary hosted by cast themselves, published by Subversive Cinema in 1982 - English narration

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Image: Land-of-Look-Behind-Cover.jpg

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"Land of Look Behind is an overlooked poetic document by Alan Greenberg from 1982. Filmed in Jamaica in May and June of 1981, Greenberg's initial intention. to my knowledge was purely to capture Bob Marley's funeral, and the impact of his death on the island's culture. But somehow, like an unusual tropical blossom, the film unfolds into something more striking and beautiful than maybe even Greenberg himself expected. It becomes an organic portrait of the very soul of Jamaica, and the earthy, pervasive sub-strata or Rastafarianism. Formally the film flows easily, seemingly growing from the climate, the music, the speech patterns, and the gentle landscape of the island itself. Footage of Marley's coffin being driven in the back of a pickup along the dusty roadways lined with throngs of devastated admirers does serve as a visual centrepiece. But the heart of the film inhabits its details. For me, a specific images seem to recur in my memory (I've seen the film several times): the way that, in the opening sequence, a backwoods countryman carefully locates and presents a small indigenous tree toad to the camera; a shot of Gregory Isaacs from behind as he exists a ground floor office and walks into Kingston's hard sunlight; and the haunting closing sequence involving a young Rasta in the hills undulating to Marley's voice and rhythms floating from a tape player, as though the music contains the secret code to a deep spiritual mystery. And, in fact, it does. In the end, Land of look Behind, in its casual, organic way taps into the true spirit of the gifts of Jamaican culture, both musical and spiritual, to somehow become a near-perfect portrait of the strength and pride of it's people. In my opinion, Alan Greenberg's film rounds out a trilogy og great movies from Jamaica which also includes The Harder They Come and Rockers. I'm happy to recommend it as a film that has not yet received the attention it deserves." - Jim Jarmusch

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[edit] Technical Specs

  • Duration: 1h 29mn
  • File size: 1.69 GB
  • Container: MKV
  • Width: 852 pixels
  • Height: 480 pixels
  • Display aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Overall bit rate: 2701 kbs
  • Frame rate: 23.976 fps
  • Audio Codec: AC3
  • Channel(s): 2 channels
  • Sampling rate: 48.0 KHz
  • Credit goes to: sleepdealer

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