The next Discover Tuesday title is McCULLIN, playing across Picturehouse Cinemas on 5 February. With thanks to Artificial Eye for these exclusive images.
To see the great photojournalist Don McCullin’s images projected onto a cinema screen is an alluring prospect in itself. But in addition to exhibiting the majesty of his prodigious portfolio, filmmakers David and Jacqui Morris also depict the man behind the camera. McCULLIN is an incredible, multifaceted documentary, at once a paralysing account of war and humanity and a heartrending portrait of a figure plagued by demons. If a picture can paint a thousand words, then this is a film of encyclopaedic proportions enclosed within 95 spellbinding minutes.
The film charts McCullin’s career, from his troubled adolescence amid the gangs of North London to his numerous escapades around the globe as a reporter for The Observer and the Sunday Times Magazine. It encompasses some of the most devastating moments of the second half of the 20th century, including the Vietnam War, the Nigerian Civil War in Biafra, and the Israeli-Lebanese conflict. The exposures – sobering visions of war and famine, and respites amid British eccentricity – are hung on screen to form their own tragic narrative, interwoven with archive television footage and a candid, eloquent interview with the man himself.
After staring through a viewfinder at unimaginable scenes of desolation, McCullin speaks from the tranquil confines of his country home, and it’s evident that his experiences have stirred a personal conflict. As well as dealing with the trauma of witnessing such horrors, he reflects on his duty as a photographer and a humanitarian. His affecting recollections, and the historic photographs that emanate boundless feeling, are expertly presented in this extraordinary documentary. Do not miss the opportunity to see it on the big screen.