Critical Writing Index

Patrimonialization and Filiation at the National Film Board of Canada: Cinema as a Heritage

by Marion Froger

American Journal of Canadian Studies, 2013

This article analyzes the commercial and social uses of the National Film Board's archives. The author argues that both uses have changed as a result of the increasing focus on digitization at the NFB. Digitized films (available either for free or through subscriptions) allow for ease of access to film archives. This new approach is also a result of its cost-effectiveness: a survival strategy in the wake of the Harper government cuts. Due to government cuts, the NFB no longer has a patrimonial mission directed to the future. The author analyzes films made in the early 21st century which are remakes of films made in the late 1960s-80s. These films create connections, i.e. filiations, to earlier NFB films and an idealized sense of community within Montreal neighbourhoods and between generations. These remakes and their strategies of filiation pose a unique challenge to the NFB's commercialized archives and their patrimonial mission that is no longer directed to the future.

ITEM 2013.136 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

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