In the early 1980s, after decades of steady deterioration, writer and academic John Hull lost his sight. To help him make sense of the ensuing upheaval in his life, he began to keep an audio diary. Across three years, he created over 16 hours of material; these recordings would form a unique testimony of loss, rebirth and renewal, excavating the interior world of blindness. Based on these original recordings and his published diaries ‘Touching the Rock’, Notes on Blindness recreates Hull’s fascinating and deeply moving experiences through an immersive hybrid of documentary, dramatic reconstruction and highly sensory cinematic techniques and sound design. Sensitive, poetic and thought-provoking, the film charts Hull’s journey through emotional turmoil and spiritual crisis to a renewed perception of the world and the discovery of ‘a world beyond sight’. Premiering at Sundance Film Festival 2016 and winner of the best documentary prize at San Francisco International Film Festival 2016, Notes on Blindness is an ambitious and groundbreaking work – both affecting and innovative – and one of the most essential British documentaries of the year.
BIFA voters say:
“Outstanding. Just brave and committed through out, well told and cinematic. Exhibits a deep understanding of how to tell a story with a camera.”