sxsw, film, documentaries, the barge

SXSW Film review: ‘Barge’ looks at life on Mississippi

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A poster for "The Barge," which world premiered at SXSW.
A poster for "The Barge," which world premiered at SXSW.

A poster for “Barge,” which world premiered at SXSW.

Our roads, the tires we roll on above the roads, the plastic on our seatbelts. All contain raw materials once stuffed onto barges that float virtually silent across the Mighty Mississippi.

Director Ben Powell’s “Barge” reminds us of the kinship the human experience holds with the river.

Powell’s work is a microcosm of family, the men who spend weeks at a time together isolated from the outside world, with the eddies of the river as companions.

“Barge” shows us that we are not completely in a post-industrial America, that things still move by water slowly, and that all the pieces matter: the elevators, engineers, cooks, deckhands, second mates, first mates and captains.

Powell explores some of the lives of the workers, but this is more a meditation on the river, the industry that operates on it and the barges that rest in it like steel turtles waiting to be shuffled.

You can catch “Barge” at 6:30 p.m. Sunday (today) at the Marchesa, and at noon Tuesday at the Alamo Slaughter and 1:30 p.m. Friday at Stateside.

 

 

 

 


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