> Skip to content

Funny, multi-layered and utterly compelling, The Director is the Commander is a gripping account of an extraordinary journey inside North Korea, a nation we can usually only see from the outside looking in.

'We were all propagandists; the only differences were our goals.'

Looking for respite from her crumbling marriage and determined to stop a coal seam gas mine near her Sydney home, filmmaker Anna Broinowski finds wisdom and inspiration in the strangest of places: North Korea. Guided by the late Dear Leader Kim Jong Il's manifesto The Cinema and Directing, Broinowski, in a world first, travels to Pyongyang to collaborate with North Korea's top directors, composers and movie stars to make a powerful anti-fracking propaganda film.

The Director is the Commander centres around the bizarre twenty-one day shoot Broinowski did in North Korea to make her documentary, Aim High in Creation! She meets and befriends artists and apparatchiki, defectors and loyalists, and gains a new insight into the world's most secretive regime. Her adventures are set against a parallel exploration of propaganda in general: both in its ham-fisted North Korean form and its sophisticated but no less pervasive incarnation in the corporate West.

Funny, multi-layered and utterly compelling, The Director is the Commander is a gripping account of an extraordinary journey inside a nation we can usually only see from the outside looking in.

'One of the many rewarding aspects of this wild book is the way Broinowski reveals a side of life in North Korea not seen in standard exposes. While acutely aware of the deprivations and absurdities, she is also alive to the nuances of daily life there.' Saturday Age Pick of the Week

Formats & editions

  • Trade Paperback

    9780670077830

    May 27, 2015

    Viking

    336 pages

    RRP $32.99

    Online retailers

    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Dymocks
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • The Nile
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • EBook

    9781743483367

    May 27, 2015

    Penguin eBooks

    320 pages

    Online retailers

    • iBooks
    • Amazon Kindle
    • Booktopia
    • eBooks
    • Google Play
    • Kobo

Awards and Recognition

  • Nita B Kibble Literary Awards
    2016
    Longlisted
    Dobbie Literary Award

Also by Anna Broinowski

Please Explain: The Rise, Fall and Rise Again of Pauline Hanson

Recommendations

The Road to Little Dribbling
In Order To Live
The Art Of Travel
Far and Away
Dear Leader
Without Reservations
Unseen
Long Road from Jarrow
The Marches
Enough Said
Africa Solo
A Sky Full of Birds
Neither Nowt Nor Summat
What Days Are For
Too Much Information
Gironimo!
Four Fields
Visit Sunny Chernobyl
The Voyages of the Princess Matilda
Walking the Amazon