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FROM EUREKA STREET...
Every family has its stories. Some more than others. For a family to air its dirty laundry in public might come across as the ultimate in self-indulgence. That Stories We a Tell manages to avoid this is no mean feat.
In it, Canadian actor and filmmaker Sarah Polley turns her camera on members of her own family, and asks them to recount their family history in their own words. She speaks with each one at length, separate from each other in order to avoid cross pollination, and attempts to layer these occasionally inconsistent accounts into a cogent whole that might illuminate one of the large unresolved dramas of their life together.
She approaches the subject with great humility. Polley herself is in fact at the centre of the story, yet for the most part she hovers at the periphery, while her brothers, sisters, father, and friends and associates of the family sit squarely, boldly, in the camera's gaze. The candidness of the interviewees is utterly compelling, a symptom no doubt of the intimacy they share with the filmmaker, Polley. But Stories We Tell does not feel voyeuristic or exploitative. Polley invites us to join them at the table, not to peep through windows and listen at cracks.
LIFEHACKER What kids should know about their family history