Monday, June 08, 2015

If you have a chance, check out "The Salt of the Earth"

by Salman Hameed

Summer is a time for blockbusters. But take a break and see The Salt of the Earth. It is a stunningly beautiful documentary about photographer SebastiĆ£o Salgado. But it is also a haunting film about the humans and what they are capable of doing. Salgado is a social photographer from Brazil who has documented, among other things, famine in Africa, massacres in Rwanda and former Yugoslavia, and conditions of workers across the globe. The beauty of his black and white photographs makes the plight of humans stand out even more. He wants you to see these harsh human conditions. In fact, he almost gave up on humans as species on this planet and worked on a project of photographing nature away from any human influence (see his project, Genesis). The film is by Wim Wenders who recently did Pina based on the works of German choreographer, Pina Bausch. Just like Pina, he lets the artist speaks for his own work. But I was wishing for a commentary by Werner Herzog on Salgado's own thought processes while taking these beautiful and yet haunting pictures. But then that would have been a different film.

In any case, this is an excellent film. Here is the trailer and below that are some of Salgado's photographs, including from the polio campaign in the Thar desert on the border of Pakistan with India:

Le Sel De La Terre - The Salt Of The Earth (2014) (Trailer) (HD) from FILMARTI Film on Vimeo.


Polio campaign in the Thar desert, Pakistan


Church Gate Station, Bombay, India


Serra Pelada gold mine, Brazil


Famine in Africa from Sahil


Another picture from Africa - from Sahil


Oil fields on fire during the first Gulf War - from Kuwait


An iguana paw in the Galapagos from Genesis


Penguins from Genesis

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