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Dust - documentary - film review SIFF 2008
by Karen Pecota

Have you ever wondered what purpose, cause or effect particles of dust have on our human existence? Many of us have once sat in a sunlit room mesmerized by the sudden appearance of tiny particles, dancing in mid-air from the spotlight of its ray. And, depending upon the intensity of the sun and its prism in which the light flows; we are awestruck, by the natural affect of the sparkle and illumination to be seen by our naked eye. The beauty and splendid magnification can be somewhat eerie. I have even been repulsed by the fact that the dancing particles which sunlight chooses to expose is pure and simply dead skin flying at will.

The European film director Harmtmut Bitomsky uses his film Dust as a vehicle to take the audience on an educational journey exploring both positive and negative characteristics of the world’s tiniest particle (dust) and how it affects our world as we know it. We are confronted with the applications every single day. The German no frills—no thrills style of documentary is anything but engaging especially to apost-modern generation of youth or younger. However, it is a typical style of documentation that an older Germanic people would respect and admire. After all, who needs attractive graphics and tantalizing music to draw their attention to material is true and factual? This older group is more interested in the material or the message! They can’t be bothered with the manipulation of their emotions in order to draw them to the subject. The information clearly stated along with visuals of scientific classroom experiments is good enough! Bitomsky’s Dust accomplishes this very task. He gives a comprehensible documentation with monotone narration that will delight the aged, possibly give them a free snooze but most likely to you post-modern it will conjure up the cynical comment or question as to how the film could have entered SIFF and how much was the pay- off for this entry.