Taylor A. “Angels, Stones, Hunters: Murder, Celebrity and Direct Cinema”. Studies in Documentary Film [Internet]. 2011;5(1):45-60. WebsiteAbstract
Direct cinema’s attempt to withhold itself from the world is ethically problematic. The helplessness of documentary subjects and audiences is underscored by this observational style. In Gimme Shelter – a concert film by Albert and David Maysles and Charlotte Zwerin about the Rolling Stones and the fatal violence at the Altamont Speedway Free Festival – social actors are forced to submit to a representational frame they cannot ‘see’, let alone access. Moreover, the audience’s own distance from the pro-filmic events is doubly assured: the film-maker’s policy of non-interference precludes and/or renders moot a viewer’s impossible desire to intercede on the subjects’ behalf