Gillo Pontecorvo and Mark Thomas — Political Art and Comedy

Filmmaker Gillo Pontecorvo, by Alexander Billet

Pontecorvo’s works like The Battle of Algiers have withstood the test of time for a reason: they continue to inspire and teach.  The flawless way in which his movies mix politics and art serves as a brilliant example for today’s directors.  Will a new generation of filmmakers take up the torch he has so gracefully passed to them?  If they do, that will be Pontecorvo’s biggest legacy.

Bruce Elder on As Used on the Famous Nelson Mandela by Mark Thomas 

There is an argument that the only way to deal with the arms trade, and the mendacity of the politicians who are prepared to make pacts with the devil to sustain it, is comedy.

So Mark Thomas, a British comedian-activist, who hovers somewhere between Michael Moore and John Pilger, decides to take on the international arms industry with humour, logic and justifiably cruel games (he sets up a faux PR company designed to help serial offenders counter accusations by Amnesty International, then heads off to an arms trade fair – the Indonesians are convinced in a very big way).

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