Guy Maddin started making films in his back yard and on his kitchen table. Now his unique work, which relies heavily on such archaic means as black and white small-format cinematography and silent-film storytelling, premieres at major film festivals around the world and is avidly discussed in the critical press. Into the Past provides a complete and systematic critical commentary on each of Maddin's feature films and shorts, from his 1986 debut film The Dead Father through to his highly successful 2008 full-length 'docu-fantasia' My Winnipeg.
William Beard's extensive analysis of Maddin's narrative and aesthetic strategies, themes, influences, and underlying issues also examines the origins and production history of each film. Each of Maddin's projects and collaborations showcase his gradual evolution as a filmmaker and his singular development of narrative forms. Beard's close readings of these films illuminate, among other things, the profound ways in which Maddin's art is founded in the past - both in the cultural past, and in his personal memory.