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Trailer Watch: The Prison in Twelve Landscapes

When it played Art of the Real last year, Astra Taylor singled out for Filmmaker the absolutely essential documentary, The Prison in Twelve Landscapes. She wrote:

Story has crafted a profound and political film that, while not sensational, is quietly shocking — even if you are already steeped in the project’s central theme. By taking an innovative and unexpected approach to the subject of mass incarceration, Story reveals just how deeply entrenched the problem of over-policing is….

The Prison in Twelve Landscapes is an impressive, genre-subverting work, and one that deserves to be seen on the big screen. It is neither an art film or an advocacy film, or perhaps it is both. It is intellectual and abstract, yet emotional and engaging. Shot by Maya Bankovic in a restrained and mediative style, Story studiously avoids the obvious in favor of the associative. You don’t see an actual prison until the film’s final fleeting shot, and yet you have felt its presence throughout.

The film is playing this weekend at the Anthology Film Archives, and you can watch the trailer above.

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