What is Louis Theroux: Docs That Made Me about?
The BBC’s asked me to talk about a few documentaries that are in the BBC archives, that made an impression on me, that I enjoyed and that may have influenced me over the years. I’ve had a look at what’s available and chose a handful of my favourites.
Tell us about the first film in your collection, Storyville: Philip And His Seven Wives
Philip And His Seven Wives is a documentary directed by Marc Isaacs, who is a terrific filmmaker. Many of his documentaries are elegiac and elliptical and in the best sense, not journalistic; they’re about mood and character and not necessarily about narrative.
This one is in some ways an anomaly, in terms of his catalogue. It’s an immersive look at this unconventional domestic arrangement in which ex Rabbi, who styles himself as one of God’s judges, thinks God’s led him to believe that he is a King and that he should have seven wives.
Why do you like about this film in particular?
I love documentaries that are about weird religious behaviour, but I also like subjects that are about unconventional sexual behaviour, and Philip And His Seven Wives has both of those. It’s a very intimate look inside how that works, what’s driving Philip and what’s driving the women those are involved with him, and it’s done very well. It could have been a kind of tawdry and tabloid-ish style doc but it’s done very poetically. There’s beautiful imagery of Phillip caring for his horses and it’s infused with a great deal of visual poetry.
And there’s something about it being in the UK, in a more or less recognisable British landscape that gives it more power. We’re used to seeing polygamous Mormons in Utah, but something about seeing it in East Sussex, close to where my mum lives, adds another twist to it.
Louis Theroux-Docs That Made Me 2018 x264-TVC
Published on: Jul 18, 2018 @ 22:33