Through revealing interviews, alternately shocking and humorous, this documentary profile of a white working-class community east of London offers a timely snapshot of an increasingly multicultural Britain. The racial composition of Barking is in rapid flux, with immigrants from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and the Balkans arriving and many longtime white residents leaving.
ALL WHITE IN BARKING probes the attitudes of Barking's white residents toward their new neighbors, characterized by unexamined (and often comic) prejudices about their dress, religious beliefs, and strange cooking smells. There's Dave, a vocally racist BNP activist with a mixed-race grandson; the elderly Holocaust survivor Monty who lives with Nigerian immigrant Betty; and Susan and Jeff, lifetime Barking residents who have ignored their new Nigerian neighbors because "they are not our people."
When the white British couple accept an invitation to dinner from the African family, and later host a barbecue for their Nigerian and Albanian neighbors, the awkward encounters take on the air of a Mike Leigh comedy, revealing both the persistence as well as the gradual undermining of racial and ethnic stereotypes.
"Brilliant!... Skillfully illuminates the absurdity of racism... it is often not racism at all but rather bewilderment, ignorance and frustration." —Sarfraz Manzoor, The Guardian
Amnesty International Award for Best Film, 2008 ZagrebDox International Documentary Film Festival
2007 International Documentary Festival Amsterdam
2007 Sheffield DocFest
"Deftly proves that racial prejudice is more complicated than it first appears." —Roland White, The Sunday Times
"Highlights the beauty that can come from acceptance while not forgetting how far there is still to go... Highly recommended." —Jessica Hopkins, The Observer
"Incisive, surprisingly upbeat documentary... Although several of the subjects interviewed express obnoxious racist opinions, experienced doc-helmer Marc Isaacs refrains from demonizing anyone here, and instead crafts a communal portrait infused with compassion." —Leslie Felperin, Variety