In the seventies, Michael was involved with Richard Mordant, Eduardo Guedes and Mark Karlin in the BERWICK STREET FILM COOPERATIVE making political films such as IRELAND BEHIND THE WIRES - 90 minutes. A political classic. Made during the “Bloody Sunday” shootings in January 1972, the film was banned in Northern Ireland when it was released in 1975.
Time Out says: The makers of this documentary offer not so much an analysis of the political situation as a record of the psychological toll.
Through interviews with men who have been tortured, images of barricades and destruction, the sight of a decidedly non-passive army in action, and the strain registered on faces young and old, one can begin to understand what it is like to live in perpetual fear in a country that has become a breeding ground for violence. Since then, Michael has written and directed over 20 documentaries, including:
MELVYN THE MAGNIFICIENT (aka LET'S HIT THE STREETS) 2005
Melvyn is an African Don Quixote from the mixed-race community in South Africa. He has one passion: to make the Cape Carnival bigger than Rio.
His mother, who taught him all the music, dies days before the parade. Some of his children who have escaped the ghetto hate Carnival and oppose Melvyn; others who are still gangsters love it.
Cape Town World Cinema Festival 2005
'The Human Righs Award'
"Raeburns' film is a rollicking run-in with the Cape Minstrel Carnival in all its glorious complications."
Andrew Whaley 'Festival Daily'
Michael's view of the crisis ravaging his country.
3 years in the making.
FIRST PRIZE - AFRICAN FILM FESTIVAL OF MILAN 2003
LONDON FILM FESTIVAL SELECTION, 2003
Double-bill with "RHODESIA COUNTDOWN" More information
SUNDAY SWEET SUNDAY (30 mins TV series)
Production: SFP, France & ITV UK
Distribution: European TV
The family today - What is it? A Catholic tailor in Milan with ten kids, a one-parent artist in Berlin,
poor pig farmers in Cornwall, a rich French family of landowners.
"A major contribution to the ITV network" The Times
"Informative and entertaining" Evening Standard
"The families are well-chosen...pertinent life-styles"
Le Figaro, Paris
UNDER AFRICAN SKIES (Series 52 mins x 5)
Production: BBC - Island Video
Distribution: International TV
The heart of modern African music today in the cities of Africa.
"An excellent series.. just the right balance between entertainment and information." Time Out, UK.
"Honest celebration of the sounds of the continent" Sunday Telegraph, UK
"Openly faces the problem of keeping the local music pure in the face of cultural imperialism" 7 Days, UK
THE PLASTIC SHAMROCK (60 mins)
Production: Vaughan Films, London & WDR, Cologne.
Distribution: European TV
A hard-hitting exposure about the effects of the 1960's industrial revolution on Ireland's society, culture and politics.
"A model of clarity, intelligence and journalistic integrity" Humo, Brussels
"An important film well worth seeing" Helsinki Sanomat
"A most illuminating film" Kolniche Runschau, Germany
THIS IS RENEE (30mins) ITS IN MY BLOOD (30mins) THIS GAME OF GOLF (55mins)
Production: Chris Lawrence/ATV, London 1975
Distribution: European TV/Howard Hughes TV,USA
Narrators Sean Connery/Caroll Baker
Camera Walter Lassally
Music - London Orchestra
International television sales
Prestigeous production shot worldwide, about the ambitions of sports champions and how they cope with pressure and high living.
"Lively and colourful" Evening News, UK
"Unique - a spendid marriage of script and picture"
Daily Mail, UK
THE MOVEMENT MOVEMENT
Production: D. Knight, London/ Gallerie Denise Renee, Paris.
Co-producer Michael Raeburn
Music: Thin Lizzy
Distribution: International TV, selected cinemas.
The kinetic art movement in Paris with Vasarely, Agam, Yvarel.