Carceral-Border Cinema: The Film from Manus Prison
Abstract: The articles in this dossier critically discuss the film Chauka, Please Tell Us the Time (Behrouz Boochani and Arash Kamali Sarvestani, 2017) and reflect on its creation and response. The film is unique in many ways. It was shot clandestinely on a smartphone; shots were smuggled out of the Manus Island immigration detention centre (which has now been dismantled, but was located on the Lombrum Naval Base and officially called Manus Regional Processing Centre) to Lorengau, the main town on the island, then to Australia, and then sent to the codirector in the Netherlands. One of the filmmakers, Behrouz Boochani, was imprisoned at the time of filming and production, an imprisonment which continues at the time of writing; and the two codirectors have never met—the whole film project was conducted over WhatsApp voice messaging and never with conversations in real time due to poor reception in the prison.