Get curated editors’ picks, peeks behind the scenes, film recommendations and more.
JA BizTown is an elementary school programme in the United States that prepares children for adulthood by engaging them in a day-long simulation of the ‘real world’ – including opportunities to ‘operate banks, manage restaurants, write checks and vote for mayor’. The short documentary The Field Trip follows a group of fifth-grade students in Portland, Oregon throughout their field trip to a simulated town – a large indoor area fitted with a bevy of faux buildings and storefronts. As the day unfolds, what is designed to be a valuable learning experience often doubles as an all-too-real window into the quotidian frustrations of navigating the bureaucratic maze of life in the modern workforce. Donning business attire or hardhats, the students thumb through binders, hopelessly click at computer screen errors and find themselves being redirected to other buildings and departments. Using an observational style, the US filmmakers Meghan O’Hara, Mike Attie and Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck pair endearing, laugh-out-loud moments with a somewhat bleak commentary on work in the 21st century.
Directors: Meghan O’Hara, Mike Attie, Rodrigo Ojeda-Beck
A tender poem doubles as a guide to sitting comfortably in one’s own company
Values and beliefs
How a God-fearing Jewish woman found atheism – and bacon – in her later years
War and peace
Before he leaves to go to war, Artem, 18, says goodbye to the man who raised him
A mindbending trip that summons the forgotten women of surrealism
Computing and artificial intelligence
How machine learning can help historians decode ancient inscriptions
Animals and humans
What the ancient city of Kars looks like from the perspective of its stray dogs
A son of China’s former one-child policy remembers the sibling he never had
Ceramic designs spin to life in a tactile meditation on the art of pottery
A harrowing account of a 1970 ‘leadership seminar’ spotlights self-help’s dark side