Upstream

21:30-22:00 BBC four
Sonntag 2019-09-29
 GB   2019
Regie: Rob Petit,
Upstream
Upstream

Upstream is a new film by the writer Robert Macfarlane and the director Rob Petit. The film, which was shot entirely from the air, follows the course of the river Dee in Scotland all the way to its source in the Cairngorm mountains, the highest of any river in Britain. Filmed over the course of three years during six gruelling expeditions, this psycho-acoustic flight weaves together images and sounds recorded along the river Dee, as well as a prosepoem written especially for the film by Macfarlane (voiced by Julie Fowlis) and an original score by the Oscar nominated composer Hauschka. Upstream begins in the lowland floodplains of the Dee, before travelling up, against the flow of the river, into Britain's own Arctic wilderness. Following in the footsteps of Nan Shepherd (The Living Mountain, 1977) who wrote memorably about this precious and wild place, the film seeks to reconnect its audience to what 'Wallace Stegner', at end of his stillcrucial "Wilderness Letter" of 1960, unforgettably calls 'the geography of hope'. "We need [wild places] available to us," he declares there, "even if we do nothing other than drive to their edge and look in. For it can be a means of reassuring ourselves of our sanity as creatures, a part of the geography of hope." Upstream is that "looking in" to the "geography of hope" of Scotland's mountains; a way of bringing their ethical as well as aesthetic power to audiences who might never otherwise be able to experience it, at a time when we need such hope most.


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