Tribeca Film Review: ‘Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project’

Tribeca Film Review: ‘Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project’
VHS tapes now have a weird sort of stodgy magical aura. Long ago, they were standard. With the arrival of DVD, they were behind the curve. Then they were totally outdated and unworkable. But now they’re so old they’re like mystic electromagnetic tablets from a lost age.

“Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project” is Matt Wolf’s documentary about a lifelong African-American resident of Philadelphia, Marion Stokes (born in 1929), who starting in the late 1970s developed an obsession with making home recordings of TV news coverage. For 30 years, she kept 3 to 8 VCRs going round the clock, 24 hours a day, taping multiple channels. She retained every tape, cataloguing and storing it, creating a running diary of television news coverage, from network to CNN to the cable channels that followed. Those tapes became her purpose and her lifeblood, maybe her identity.

What drove the obsession? That, of course, is the subject — the essential mystery — of “Recorder.
See full article at Variety - Film News »

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