British/Ghanaian filmmaker John Akomfrah’s Stuart Hall feature documentary made its World Premiere at the Sundance Film Festival, under the title The Stuart Hall Project.

It makes it UK theatrical premiere tomorrow, while we here in the USA wait for a similar opportunity. Ahead of its UK theatrical debut, the British Film Institute (BFI) has released a brand-new trailer for the film, featuring the music of Miles Davis (also on the film’s soundtrack, and is of influence on the film’s subject). 

The moody trailer is embedded below.

Hall is a Jamaican cultural theorist and sociologist who has lived and worked in the UK since 1951. He was President of the British Sociological Association from 1995-1997. His resume is certainly much more extensive and broader than that, and Akomfrah’s documentary will fill in the blanks.

Here’s how its described:

Antinuclear campaigner, New Left activist and founding father of Cultural Studies, this documentary interweaves 70 years of Stuart Hall’s film, radio and television appearances, and material from his private archive to document a memorable life and construct a portrait of Britain’s foremost radical intellectual.

And it should be fitting that the task has been undertaken by an influential black British artist, lecturer, writer, filmmaker and intellectual himself, who one could also describe as radical in his own right – as well as a founder of the Black Audio Film Collective, with a 20-year-old body of work that is among the most distinctive in the contemporary British art world.

I’ve seen the film – thrice actually, not necessarily because it’s so utterly compelling (although it is compelling), but because of just how dense it is, with multiple layers (music, words, images, other sounds, and seemingly more) often working simultaneously, creating an almost hypnotic effect on the viewer. I’d say it demands, at least, a second viewing for one to feel like they have something of a grasp on it.

For our readers in the UK, it opens at your local cinema tomorrow. For the rest of the world, stay tuned…

Check out the trailer below: