Film of the week: Grierson

Jonathan Melville 22 February, 2012 0

Every Wednesday we’ll be presenting a full length film made in Scotland or by Scottish talent that’s available to watch online. The films will mainly be short fiction or documentary but feature length films, music videos, adverts and more will make an appearance.

To mark the 40th anniversary of the death of Scottish filmmaker John Grierson, this week’s film is a change from the norm in that rather being Scottish it was made in Canada to celebrate the life and career of the “father of the documentary”.

Born in Deanston, near Doune, Grierson served in the Royal Navy during World War I before embarking on a diverse career which eventually led him to create what we know as documentary filmmaking.

This feature film is a portrait of Grierson, who also became the first Canadian Government Film Commissioner and founder of the National Film Board in 1939. Interweaving archival footage, interviews with people who knew him and footage of Grierson himself, this film is a sensitive and informative portrait of a dynamic man of vision.

John Grierson died on 19 February, 1972, meaning this is a perfect time to learn more about one of Scotland’s best-known filmmakers. Grierson is streamed from the website of the National Film Board of Canada.

Find out how to submit your film to Film of the week.