Public school prat Nick Broomfield attempts to catch up with Eugene Terre’Blanche, leader of the South African neo-Nazi party and subject of his earlier documentary.
Screened as part of NZIFF 2006
Nick Broomfield confronts white racism in South Africa a decade after the end of apartheid. The documentarian first encountered Eugene Terre’Blanche, leader of the South African neo-Nazi party (AWB), in his unforgettable The Leader, His Driver and the Driver’s Wife in 1991. Broomfield, who perfected the on-screen persona of the incredulous filmmaker while Michael Moore was still practising in his bedroom, skipped like a public school prat around the incredible hulk that is Terre’Blanche – and provoked him repeatedly into revealing the brutality of his ignorance and hatred. Terre’Blanche often looked ridiculous in his thundering egotism, but the fact that you were laughing at him made his viciousness all the more appalling. In His Big White Self Broomfield attempts to catch up with Terre’Blanche, on parole from an insanely light jail sentence. In the earlier film his gregarious chauffeur and his wife spoke for all who followed the leader. Broomfield catches up with them as well, as he measures the damage done and the ways in which an enclave of Afrikaans supremacy endures.