Beyond good/should/bad: Teaching Australian Indigenous ﬁlm and television
In this article I want to consider the procedure whereby a ﬁlm or television series is
constructed as socially ‘good’, thus becoming something ‘worthy’, and how worthiness in
turn leads to something ‘bad’ for spectators and viewers, in the sense that these ﬁlms
become something we feel we should see rather than something we want to see. I am
interested in exploring how this procedure has shaped recent popular reception of
Indigenous ﬁlm and television in Australia. I also want to consider in what ways this
‘should’ factor contributes to non-Indigenous student pre-conceptions of Indigenous ﬁlm.
Following on from Belinda Smaill’s article (in this issue), I want to reﬂect on the problem
of why many students in my courses think of Indigenous ﬁlm as a ‘bad learning
experience’: a boring and uninteresting topic.