Don McCullin has spent his life going face-to-face in some of the world’s most dangerous conditions in order to get the photograph. Born in London in the 1930s, McCullin returned from RAF after the Suez Crisis and almost immediately had a picture of his published in The Observer. This image of a local London gang began McCullin’s career, one which would see him enter some of the perilous situations of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, in order to capture some of the most exhilarating imagery ever created.
From the secessionist Biafra, to victims of the AIDS epidemic in Africa, to the Vietnam War and Northern Ireland during The Troubles, McCullin has been there, and a new documentary on the man is one of the most engaging arts films of recent years. Comprised almost exclusively of his images and a voice-over interview narration, McCullin is both a warm portrait of the man, as well as a hard-hitting overview of social documentary photography.
To warn, this isn’t sometimes the easiest of films to watch, but it’s certainly one of the most worthwhile you’ll see all year.
McCullin is on general release.