Australian Screen

Australia’s audiovisual heritage online

Rocking the Foundations (1985)

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clip A Sydney story

Original classification rating: G. This clip chosen to be G

Clip description

Sydney, Australia, is established as the location of the film and the narration introduces the film’s premise and establishes the filmmaker as the story-teller.

Curator’s notes

This pre-title sequence is very important in setting up the perspective of the film in regard to the telling of this history. The use of the quote from Bertolt Brecht makes it clear that the film is telling the story from the worker’s point of view and the narration using the 'I’ voice lets us know that the filmmaker is speaking as an insider. Clearly the documentary has a specific perspective. It is not trying to present a 'balanced’ view but promises to give an insight into an untold history from the point of view of the rank and file who were actually there.

The esteemed Australian documentary maker, Bob Connolly, worked with Pat Fiske on the editing and narration of this sequence and it is both poetic and political in its promise. The use of wind sound effects, melodic music, gentle narration and rhythmic editing are at odds with the more strident presentation of unionism, strikes and activism that were usually associated with left-wing actions of the time.

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australianscreen is produced by the National Film and Sound Archive. By using the website you agree to comply with the terms and conditions described elsewhere on this site. The NFSA may amend the 'Conditions of Use’ from time to time without notice.

All materials on the site, including but not limited to text, video clips, audio clips, designs, logos, illustrations and still images, are protected by the Copyright Laws of Australia and international conventions.

When you access australianscreen you agree that:

  • You may retrieve materials for information only.
  • You may download materials for your personal use or for non-commercial educational purposes, but you must not publish them elsewhere or redistribute clips in any way.
  • You may embed the clip for non-commercial educational purposes including for use on a school intranet site or a school resource catalogue.
  • The National Film and Sound Archive’s permission must be sought to amend any information in the materials, unless otherwise stated in notices throughout the Site.

All other rights reserved.

ANY UNAUTHORISED USE OF MATERIAL ON THIS SITE MAY RESULT IN CIVIL AND CRIMINAL LIABILITY.

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