Antarctica: A Year on Ice | Chicago Reader

Antarctica: A Year on Ice

Self-taught New Zealand filmmaker Anthony Powell directed and shot this documentary about his experiences working on an Antarctic research base for over a decade. There are gorgeous images of icebergs and the aurora australis, and Powell makes excellent use of time-lapse photography to capture such natural phenomena as a sea freezing over. What registers most strongly, though, is the sense of loneliness and professional drudgery; he manages communications systems for a living, and his workaday perspective distinguishes the movie from your typical exotic-locale documentary. In fact Powell's impressions are so unique that they inspire wonder at the variety of lives taking place on the planet.

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