Set in a city besieged by bombings, ballots, banking crises, and bristling ructions amongst the Royal Family, London is a remarkable document of the period. Avoiding the easy conventions of documentary and fiction, the film is narrated by an unseen, Rimbaud-quoting narrator who returns to the city after spending some time abroad; the audience accompanies him on a peripatetic journey around his old haunts, and in the process, paints a whimsical picture of a place suffering the depredations of recession, led by a crippled and uncredited government, and facing an acute identity crisis. An atmosphere, one might surmise, not unlike our own.
Back in 2010, filmmaker James Bridle has set out on the thankless task of re-shooting London, to show how the city has changed in the past 19 years. But he needs your help. Keiller’s film tramps high and low about the city, pitching out to Brentford, Dalston, the Isle of Dogs, Perivale, and often to nonexistent places, like the “University of Barking”. Scouting out all those locations isn’t easy. Click through the picture gallery and see if you recognise any, then drop a note here or in the Flickr group that James has set up.