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Phantom Rides as Images of the World Unfolding

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Abstract

Traveling shots such as phantom rides symbolize the trajectory of travel and the experience of movement that is inherent to travel. Their primary quality is movement and the ability to draw the viewer into the world on screen. They are ideal tools for documentary makers to experiment with form and content, with time and space, duration and distance, and in doing so create a moment of critical distance for the viewer. This chapter focuses on two Australian works that use phantom rides as their basic material to engage with the world: the SBS documentary The Ghan (2018) and Daniel Crooks’ mesmerizing video installation Phantom Ride (2016). Contrary to mapping duration as a coherently located whole as in conventional documentary film, The Ghan and Phantom Ride provide different, sometimes competing, temporalities that lack a clear (narrative) motivation. They provide restless spaces that denaturalize our experience of time, distance us from our habitual reading of space, and transport us into a world unfolding where things go off in unimagined directions.

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-96767-7_8
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Correspondence to Gerda Cammaer .

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Cammaer, G. (2018). Phantom Rides as Images of the World Unfolding. In: Cammaer, G., Fitzpatrick, B., Lessard, B. (eds) Critical Distance in Documentary Media. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-96767-7_8

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