“Of Time and the City” (2008)

Of Time and the City is a 2008 British documentary collage film directed by Terence Davies.

The film has Davies recalling his life growing up in Liverpool in the 1950s and 1960s, using newsreel and documentary footage supplemented by his own commentary voiceover and contemporaneous and classical music soundtracks.

The film premiered at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival where it received rave reviews.

Time Out said “The one truly great movie to emerge so far (from Cannes)….. this film is as personal, as universal in its relevance, and as gloriously cinematic as anything he has done”[1] and The Guardian called it “a British masterpiece, a brilliant assemblage of images that illuminate our past. Not only does it tug the heart-strings but it’s also savagely funny.”

BBC TV film critic Mark Kermode nominated it as the best overall film of 2008 on his “Kermode Awards” section of The Culture Show. In 2018 Kermode placed the film at number 1 in a list of his favourite films of the decade (2008-2018). Duane Byrge from The Hollywood Reporter lauded the film as “poetically composed” and a “masterwork”.

Of Time and the City won Best Documentary in the Australian Film Critics Association awards for 2009.

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