Friday, January 13, 2017

Werner Herzog: 'Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World' (2016)

Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World, Werner Herzog's free-wheeling documentary about the rise and impact of the internet inspires thought. Though low-key, the film is consciousness-raising, like Marshall McLuhan's concept of "the electronic envelope" into which we are folded, or McLuhan's "Global Village" (1962) and "Global Theatre" (1970).  

Here, Herzog asks several globally-connected people: "Does the internet dream of itself?" Not coincidentally, Philip K. Dick's dystopian vision is brought into the mix at one point (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? -- the 1968 novel that morphed into the 1982 movie Blade Runner). 
A scene from LO AND BEHOLD, a Magnolia Pictures release. Photo courtesy of Magnolia Pictures. The memorably strange choice of interview setting and style in this scene speaks volumes about Herzog and his creative crew.
In Lo and Behold, Herzog interviews all sorts of people, including the visionary Elon Musk. 

As one fellow movie-watcher noted, Herzog really knows how to shake people out of the trees. 

Several facets of the internet are covered, including cyber attacks, other disruptions in the net, collaborative research, social media personae, self-driving vehicles, people afraid of "the rays," the rise of the robots and upcoming plans for colonizing Mars. 

It's not all good to think about, but behold, even the most oblivious users of the internet are daily immersed in its ways. Much to be aware of and ruminate upon.

Today's Rune: Fertility.  


Charles Gramlich said...

It has revamped society and certainly cries out for some good analysis

Barbara Bruederlin said...

The film and its take on the subject are certainly timely. I will look for it!