The Mendi

Steve Reinke

2006, 09:00 minutes, colour, English

TAPECODE 345.131

Over found footage from The Mendi — an ethnographic documentary made for the CBC’s Man Alive television show in the 1970s — the narrator tells of his summer as a teenage assistant to the filmmakers. In the tradition of Bunuel’s Land Without Bread.

“The latest missive from Canadian vid genius Reinke finds him recovering an errant CBC documentary and finding a new way to look at it by working on the soundtrack. He sees with his ears, and with his mouth. He applies his mouth to this footage, he gives it mouth to mouth, so that it can be seen again. This movie is very much in the tradition of Trinh T. Min-Ha, especially her early, interventionist, meta-anthropological work like
Re:assemblage. His fearlessness makes me wonder: how could he? How does he dare?”

—Mike Hoolboom for the International Film Festival Rotterdam

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Critical Writing

Deeply unsettled and uncertain: Steve Reinke's ruthless untruths
by Jon Davies. Xtra!, Mar. 1, 2007, no. 583.