A program of short stories that would never have existed without the internet.
A heartwarming portrait of the care organizations in Port Augusta, Australia: the Men’s Shed, the Wami Kata home for the elderly, and the Young Fathers group.
Big Stories, Small Towns by directors Jeni Lee and Sieh Mchawala is a heartwarming portrait of Port Augusta, “the crossroads of Australia.”
As described in the short introductory film, the project’s aim is to “shine a light on locals who cared for the people around them.” The directors accomplished this by making short films about three specific organizations: the local Men’s Shed, a typically Australian phenomenon, where the elderly do woodwork; the Wami Kata home for the elderly, which cares for aborigines suffering from dementia; and the local branch of Young Fathers, a group devoted to young fathers of aboriginal origin.
These three observational films form the backbone of the website, but the site also gives the community itself an opportunity to speak, through photo series and digital stories.
In addition, it presents the history of Port Augusta through a handful of short archive films. Lee and Mchawala’s website uses a collection of small stories to create a bigger and broader picture of Australia’s fifth largest city.
IDFA DocLab is the New Media program of the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA). Since 2007, the program showcases new forms of documentary storytelling and interactive media art, both online and offline. During the IDFA Festival in November, DocLab presents a competition program for Digital Documentary Storytelling, live cinema events, interactive installations, workshops and industry panels. The program is open to all media that can be used to tell a documentary story.