Consider the above infallible proof of Frederick Wiseman’s genius.

Even if you don’t condescend to call yourself any kind of film aficionado, you must have at least heard of the man. He’s only produced and directed 40-some-odd documentaries in about as many years (including the aforementioned “High School,” our personal fave), setting the bar in terms of ethical representation and creative style for innumerable filmmakers to follow.

What you may not know is that the most current subject to come under Wiseman’s professional scrutiny is none other than our very own UC Berkeley. Since the middle of August, the 80-year-old legend has been prowling around campus — in search, we’re sure, of footage capturing the titillating truths and satirical subtleties that have rendered his previous work so momentous and, occasionally, shocking.

He certainly doesn’t seem to have met with any administrative resistance; Wiseman describes the chancellor et al as “extremely generous in opening up and letting me participate in meetings and conversations and events,” essentially giving him free reign of the university.

Moreover, the director and cameraman John Davey are shooting on HD as opposed to 16mm — which, in layman’s terms, means they’ll be able to garner a ridiculous amount of material due to substantially lower costs. According to Wiseman, he expects to acquire enough footage to make a documentary up to 20 hours in length. Yeah … Berkeley’s real interesting and all, but you could not make us sit through that film to save your life.

Fortunately, we expect he’ll cut that baby down to reasonable size by the time it airs on PBS in the next couple of years. We also anticipate the unveiling of many scandals. Come on, Wiseman. Don’t disappoint.

High -School 1968 (Relationship Conversation) [YouTube]
43 years after ‘Titicut Follies,’ it’s Berkeley, the movie [NewsCenter]



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