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13 Ratings

By Our Selves

Directed by Andrew Kötting
United Kingdom, 2015


Toby Jones, Andrew Kötting (as a straw bear) and their merry men revive the wanderings and wonderings of Northamptonshire peasant poet John Clare, on a quest “for scenes where man hath never trod”.

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By Our Selves Directed by Andrew Kötting

What are people saying?

  • Renton47's rating of the film By Our Selves

    Initially it successfully posits itself as a link between psychedelics and mental illness, a biopic in the manner of Naked Lunch, investigating psychic terrain. It's quick to devolve into nonsense, shots of Toby Jones wandering without direction (not as good as that sounds). The inclusion of the technical crew in every second shot reveals a kind of improvised tomfoolery which makes this seem aimless.

  • jack.clare208's rating of the film By Our Selves

    Upon leaving this film I felt that all it had done is circle the issue of John Clare without giving us anything to really sink our teeth into. It seemed to me that this film required you to study John Clare's life and poetic works before gleaning any real meaning from it. Normally I would say that art should contain everything it needs for the audience to understand it, but the idea of a film being a shrine,...

  • Adam Whybray's rating of the film By Our Selves

    At first I found the combination of intimacy and alienation effects off-putting, but I soon settled into the film's odd groove. Alan Moore is a dour and twinkly-eyed interviewee as ever, describing Northampton as a cultural blackhole in a surprisingly literal (just not metaphorical) sense. Generally stays on the right side of compassion > fetishisation of mental illness when it comes to John Clare. Intriguing & deft.

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