Goodbye Uncle Tom (1971) Addio Zio Tom

Goodbye Uncle Tom (1971) Addio Zio Tom

Directed by: Gualtiero Jacopetti, Franco Prosperi

Actors: Gualtiero Jacopetti, Franco Prosperi

Language: Italian | English

Country: Italy

Also known as: Addio zio Tom, Addio, Onkel Tom!, Adiós tío Tom, Adjö människan, Antio, theie Tom, Farewell Uncle Tom, Farvel, onkel Tom, Hyvästi ihminen, Jacopetti’s Uncle Tom, Les négriers, Uncle Tom, White Devil: Black Hell, Zio Tom

Description: “Goodbye Uncle Tom” – pseudo documentary where filmmakers go back in time and visit the slave-owning American South. They review and investigate in vivid graphic detail the extreme-unbearable living conditions Negro slaves who were on American soil. Life of a slave is depicted as a non-stop exploitation, violence, torture, mockery, humiliation perpetrated by white hosts. The authors use a lot of documents of the time, so shown on the screen is very close to reality.

Perhaps one of the best films about black slavery in the United States. First of all pleasantly surprised by the thorough approach to the study and presentation of the material, references to sources at the time of specific events related to violence against people, such as the brutal transport of slaves in ships, after which could survive only the most healthy slaves or farms where they literally bred after the ban importation of slaves from Africa. Still affects the experience Yakopetti and Prosperi as documentary filmmakers. Actually the fact that the film is fiction, gives him a significant advantage, as these directors documentaries (“Farewell Africa”, “Dog World”) with the real violence against animals and humans can not see, because of the obvious.

The camera behaves as it should in the (pseudo) documentary. Pleased naturalism when directors spraschivayut actors playing the slave-owners, if they are not Catholic, and they efficiently respond that “faithful Roman Apostolic Church.” The camera remains submerged in the era entirely.

However, in the film are present leap out of the XIX century. in the 60 years of the present, showing the parallels then the black movement for equal rights and troubles of slaves in the United States at the appropriate times. Indicative here is the anachronism when some guy with an afro, (a clear reference to the “Black Panther” and others like them) reads the novel “Confessions of Nat Turner,” the revolt of slaves, imevschem place in the 40-ies. XIX c., Representing its members in the form of a classic black revolutionaries of modern 60’s.

And hell, believe every word, said the director, about the terrible plight of the people in it seemed to be a civilized society, about the torture and humiliation of human dignity. All this is shown in a monstrous for a feature film naturalism, here you will see the disgusting physical injury, child nudity, and many other unappetizing scenes.

At the same time, the film looks very easy, in the same breath, the music plays a big role, much of which was written by Ortalani, but also there is an American classic 50’s and 60’s.

And the last thing I would like to note in this film, it is the expression, the same spark that distinguishes mediocre, cynical, in journalistic shot, Documentaries from the movie that touches the soul. “Goodbye Uncle Tom” – this is the last time. You can talk about trash, quality music, as the actuality of the expressive elements, but to make the film so that he wanted to laugh and cry, it’s not easy, but the creators deal with it.

Personally, I think this film is one of the best in its genre, for example, along with “The Pianist” by Roman Polanski.

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