Watermark review


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“How does water shape us, how do we shape water?” asks photographer Edward Burtynsky who, along with filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal, seeks to explore just that in this Canadian documentary. Much like the pair’s 2006 collaboration Manufactured Landscapes , their study of water – scientists drilling ice in Greenland, millions washing away sins in India, China’s staggering Xiaolangdi Dam – is visually led.

However, with no narration or context, its subject matter comes across as dry, while the enviro-message is undermined by a yawn-inducing lack of urgency.

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Stephen is a freelance culture journalist specialising in TV and film. He writes regularly for the Guardian, the Daily Telegraph, the i, Radio Times, and WIRED.