Exposing her role behind the camera, Johnson reaches into the vast trove of footage she has shot over decades around the world. What emerges is a visually bold memoir and a revelatory interrogation of the power of the camera.
What does it mean to film another person? How does it affect that person - and what does it do to the one who films? Kirsten Johnson is one of the most notable cinematographers working in documentary cinema today, having shot CITIZENFOUR, HAPPY VALLEY, FAHRENHEIT 9/11, THE OATH, THE INVISIBLE WAR, and dozens of other essential documentaries. With her visually radical memoir CAMERAPERSON, Johnson presents an extraordinary and deeply poetic film of her own, drawing on the remarkable and varied footage that she has shot and reframing it in ways that illuminate moments and situations that have personally affected her. What emerges is an elegant meditation on the relationship between story-telling and the camera frame, as Johnson transforms scenes that have been presented in so many other directors’ films as one reflection of truth into another kind of story - one about personal journey, craft, and direct human connection.