Cinema Simply Different

This experimental doc film manages to impress even without any dialogue or narrative. It solely consists of archival footage that was masterfully edited and crafted into a film by director Godfrey Reggio and his team over the course of six years. Koyaanisqatsi takes the audience onto a voyage that begins in a cave with mysterious paintings on the wall, continues along hauntingly beautiful landscapes and gradually draws closer to the hectic centers of modern human life. In contrast to nature’s serenity, humankind is presented as morbidly obsessed with consumer culture and generally overwhelmed by what it has created. The audience repeatedly passes from the unnaturally bright urban buzz to the very dark sides of civilization and back.

This visually stunning portrait is accompanied by an electrifying soundtrack composed by Philip Glass. His tunes sound overbearingly frantic at times, and at other times they turn into grave and solemn hymns, which help to underline the film’s somberly sobering message.

Carlos Hartmann

Other films in this program