Shermans March. Themes

Shermans March

Mcelwee originally set out   to make a film about how people felt about the American civil war but he became sidetracked when his girlfriend left him at the begging of filming the film composses a general parodic comparison of roos mcelwee filmmaker and general Sherman warrior the devastating acts of war filmmaking and love affairs are implicly compared throughout the film. McElwee sets out to record his encounters with various southern women. But he continues to film places where General Sherman lived and fought. When he includes segments during which he films himself alone, voicing his own thoughts about his failures in love affairs, he includes asides about the life of General Sher-man and his own fears of nuclear annihilation. Small sequences portraying the filmmaker's trip through the South punctuate the larger commentaries by Mc- Elwee and the women he interviews. The women interviewed by this filmmaker talk about the Civil War, about their careers and plans, about love, and about their relationship with the South  
The first woman to be portrayed at length is Pat, an actress, who, like McElwee, grew up in the South but left her home to pursue her career. She is very comfort-able with McElwee and his camera, and teasingly performs cellulite exercises for him and tells him the plot of her fantasy movie script. He juxtaposes his and Gen-eral Sherman's personas with that of Burt Reynolds, whom he calls his "neme-sis" at one point in the film. Pat is trying to meet Mr. Reynolds, as he is filming a new movie in the Atlanta area. McElwee develops the theme of Mr. Reynolds as the perfect romantic hero in a film script (Draper 1987:42). This theme is pur-sued later in the film when McElwee uses footage of a Burt Reynolds look-alike he meets (who is also searching for Mr. Reynolds) and the set of the movie where Mr. Reynolds is signing autograp

Even though Ross McElwee has no crew, thus forcing him to stay behind the camera, he is, like Michael...