Select Page

Author: Chelsea Phillips-Carr

Culture at a Distance: Ulrike Ottinger’s “Johanna d’Arc of Mongolia”

The films of German director Ulrike Ottinger, who has been working consistently since the early 1970s, can be characterized by continual progressive exploration, whether that entails experimental or surrealistic visuals or filmmaking modes, or the movement beyond a white heteromasculine culture that makes up the norm. Ottinger’s 1989 film, Johanna d’Arc of Mongolia, which closes Toronto’s Goethe Institut’s short retrospective of her work, encapsulates this exploration. Delphine Seyrig, in her last role, stars as Lady Windermere, an ethnologist traveling across Mongolia on the Trans-Siberian Railway. She and her bourgeois European companions are taken hostage by Mongolian princess Ulan Iga...

Read More