The Forgotten Space Image
Metascore
54

Mixed or average reviews - based on 5 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: The sea is forgotten until disaster strikes. But perhaps the biggest seagoing disaster is the global supply chain, which - maybe in a more fundamental way than financial speculation- leads the world economy to the abyss. The film follows container cargo aboard ships, barges, trains and trucks, listening to workers, engineers, planners, politicians, and those marginalized by the global transport system. We visit displaced farmers and villagers in Holland and Belgium, underpaid truck drivers in Los Angeles, seafarers aboard mega-ships shuttling between Asia and Europe, and factory workers in China, whose low wages are the fragile key to the whole puzzle. And in Bilbao, we discover the most sophisticated expression of the belief that the maritime economy, and the sea itself, is somehow obsolete. A range of materials is used: descriptive documentary, interviews, archive stills and footage, clips from old movies. The result is an essayistic, visual documentary about one of the most important processes that affects us today. The Forgotten Space is based on Sekula's massive long-term project Fish Story, seeking to understand and describe the contemporary maritime world in relation to the complex symbolic legacy of the sea. (Doc.Eye Film)
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 3 out of 5
  2. Negative: 1 out of 5
  1. Reviewed by: Kalvin Henely
    Feb 14, 2012
    75
    If you think of Wall Street as capitalism's symbolic headquarters, filmmakers Allan Sekula and Noël Burch more or less show us in The Forgotten Space how the sea is capitalism's global trading floor writ large.
  2. Reviewed by: Mark Holcomb
    Feb 14, 2012
    70
    Epic in scope, intellectual agility, and the potential to induce panic and despair, this documentary exploration of global trade as an emblem of economic apocalypse avoids (just barely) doom-mongering by virtue of its compassion and visual grandeur.
  3. Reviewed by: A.O. Scott
    Feb 16, 2012
    70
    Unabashedly polemical and rigorously pessimistic, a sustained Marxian indictment of 21st-century capital. The narration, by Mr. Sekula, is at times lyrical and rarely subtle, but the film is most graceful and moving when its argument slows down or wanders into an interesting tangent.
  4. Reviewed by: Jay Weissberg
    Feb 14, 2012
    50
    Sekula's overwritten narration, with its fair share of whoppers, does his argument no favors, overwhelming genuinely interesting statistics.
  5. Reviewed by: Keith Uhlich
    Feb 14, 2012
    20
    For the most part, The Forgotten Space treats its subjects and settings as exploitable commodities in service to a lot of facile rise-working-man! muckraking. The ism trumps all.
Score distribution:
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  2. Mixed: 0 out of
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