Video

Out of the Blue

Richard Fung

1991, 28:00 minutes, colour, English

TAPECODE 183.06

On January 8, 1989 a Pickering, Ontario flea market was robbed. Witnesses reported the robbers consisted of one white man and four black people. Later that day, police disrupted a Scarborough church service, arresting one South Asian boy and four Black youths including a girl of thirteen. All were later released when it was proven that they were in church when the robbery occurred. The oldest of the arrested, Julien Didier was twenty at the time. This tape follows his experience of the events.

For NOW Magazine (Jan. 1992), Cameron Bailey writes:

“Richard Fung’s Out of the Blue about a young black man arrested by Toronto police in a case of 'mistaken identity,' sets all kind of undercurrents in play. It’s at once a glimpse of the complex class relations in black communities, a critique of media responses to the case, and a very perceptive portrait… Where his earlier tapes generally plant themselves at the intersection of personal history and community politics, this one takes on a subject that runs the risk of documentary objectivity. While Out of the Blue seems conceived, like his safe-sex number Steam Clean and Fighting Chance, on gay Asians dealing with HIV, as a functional and inspiring tool, it has the added appeal of constructive dissonance. As deft as the situation requires, Fung manages moments of political alignment between Asian artist and black subject, something rarely attempted in the imaginary community known as people of colour.”

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