26 Feb 2012
Cinematógrafo del Chopo, Museo Universitario del Chopo
27 Feb 2012
Sala José Revueltas
28 Feb 2012
Sala Carlos Monsiváis
LOW DEFINITION CONTROL – MALFUNCTIONS #0 | CONTROL DE BAJA RESOLUCIÓN – FALLA # 0
|Michael Palm AT | 2011 | 95 min | 35 mm
* Q&A with director: Sala José Revueltas, 27 feb., 20:00 h.
Deleuze and Foucault readers will quickly recognize some of their theses illustrated with great precision in this lucid film essay by Michael Palm. Indeed, “societies of control” and “bio-politics” are no longer ideas conceived by brilliant minds of the past century but a normalized 21st-century practice which Palm shows in his film in a structured way: everyday movements in the subway or the street, the mobility of a fetus, the microphysics of brain activity, medical practices, all of these are subjects to control and the camera is an instrument that promotes the old jail-observation system known as panoptical. Everybody knows he or she is being watched, everybody internalizes predictable behaviors in face of an omnipresent eye disjointed in different locations and deprived of any reference. Thesis: we live in the order of total visibility.
One of the chapters, “Tolstoi’s Machine,” reveals how behavioral abnormalities in the public space can be predicted. Thus, behavioral dissidence invites to suspicion and from this derives that presumption of innocence is being substituted by virtual guiltiness. Palm combines surveillance-camera images with remarkable images (most of them open shots) of life in the cities with their morphology of buildings, as some alleged sociologists and physicians talk about what we see and about what we don’t see too. The image possesses a semantic excess –some would say—and we see in it just what we can. The sound design underlines the opposition between a utopian universe as presented in some fictions of the past and our own dystopian reality.
The starting point is a piece of sociological evidence: the end of certitude implies the institutionalization of fear as a blueprint mood that facilitates a discreet and yet efficient and pervasive militarization of public space, and also of our intimacy, to a certain degree. Orwell’s famous 1984 and its Big Brother are part of an old narrative, today the "Little Sisters" are the ones watching us at all times, even when we go out into the woods.
Screen WriterMichael Palm
SoundMichael Palm. Música: Trevor Duncan, Maurice Ravel
FilmographyLow Definition Control –Malfunctions #0 | Control de
baja resolución – falla #0 • 2011, Edgar G. Ulmer –
The Man Off-screen • 2004
FestivalsCPH:DOX Festival Internacional de Cine Documental
de Copenhague, 2011
Festival Internacional de Cine de Mar del Plata, 2011
Sección Panorama-Estados Alterados
Festival Internacional de Cine de Viena, 2011