WORLDS OF URSULA K. LeGUIN (2019). A solid, compact (68 mins.) overview of the famed speculative fiction author. With such a short running time, Arwen Curry's Documentary can't delve too deeply into a career that spanned decades, included dozens of novels, books and short stories and had such a profound influence on the arts; Instead, Curry's movie is more of an outline. An Introduction.
Some brief biographical details are included, as well as some original footage shot during the last years of her life (she passed in 2018). Rather than attempt a full bibliography of every book and story she wrote, the Doc focuses on a handful of writings to give the essence of her work. Particular emphasis is placed on LeGuin's landmark Earthsea series. Begun in 1968 (Wizard of Earthsea), Curry traces how LeGuin's 6 books went from pure fantasy to more developed SF themes to, by the end with 2001's The Other Wind, a grand vision. Curry shows how the Earthsea series reflected own maturity, not only as a writer, but, as a woman (some of her early work took an implicitly male-dominated viewpoint).
Curry includes some efficient animation by Ariel Martian to illustrate some of LeGuin's fantasy worlds, and, amusingly, intercuts footage from old sci-fi films to illustrate the difference between 'hard' SF with LeGuin's more philosophical works. Interviews with celebrated writers extolling the influence of the author include Margaret Atwood, Michael Chabon and Neil Gaiman.
THE WORLDS OF URSULA K. LeGUIN can best be summed up as an invitation to read her works with a bit of insight into her career as provided here.