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Swandown

Directed by Andrew Kötting

UK, 2012

Cornerhouse, 21 July 2012

Swandown

Or Two Men in a Swan Pedalo, that title would work quite as well.

Several rivers and canals are traversed as Andrew Kötting and Iain Sinclair boat it from Hastings to Hackney, encroaching there upon an Olympic site.  Perhaps it is intended as some kind of protest film?  Sinclair spews out various literary quotes and reference points along the way (to The Ancient Mariner, Hope Hodgson’s fantasy, The Odyssey) but he is absent for the very last part of the journey.

They swap the swan with some people: Alan Moore and Stewart Lee have a go riding it for a while, during which they rabbit on about this and that, whatever takes their fancy.  Or another guy will join Kötting in the swan.  So, for example, there’s an academic attempting to explain Popper’s philosophy of science: hypothetico-deductive reasoning and the importance of the disconfirming instance.   And they chat to people in other boats and along the riverbank.

It’s a nice idea for a film: ride a white swan to the London Olympics.  Not nice, grand; it’s a grand idea and no mistake.  Yes, but that’s about all.

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