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Stereo (1969)

Not Rated  |   |  Sci-Fi  |  30 November 1973 (USA)
5.5
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Reviews: 18 user | 26 critic

Sometime in the future, the Canadian Academy for Erotic Inquiry is investigating the theories of parapsychologist Luther Stringfellow. Seven young adults volunteer to submit to a form of ... See full summary »

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Cast

Complete credited cast:
Ronald Mlodzik
Jack Messinger
Iain Ewing
Clara Mayer
Paul Mulholland
Arlene Mlodzik
Glenn McCauley
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Storyline

Sometime in the future, the Canadian Academy for Erotic Inquiry is investigating the theories of parapsychologist Luther Stringfellow. Seven young adults volunteer to submit to a form of brain surgery that removes their power of speech but increases their power for telepathic communication. An unseen group of students observes the results. As the experiment progresses, Stringfellow's theories come to fruition. Later, aphrodisiacs and various other drugs are introduced to the subjects to expose an inherent polymorphous perversity. In the end, they are isolated from each other, provoking antagonism and violence between them, which results in two suicides. Written by Daeha Ko <dko@u.washington.edu>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Sci-Fi

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

30 November 1973 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fast Company  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,500 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

According to an interview, the film is silent, except for the voice off (added later), because David Cronenberg's camera was too noisy during filming. See more »

Connections

Featured in From Stereo to Video (2014) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Only for fans that must have every bit of Cronenberg minutae
29 March 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This strange gem fits suitably in the creche of Cronenberg bit it's not for everyone that loves Cronenberg....Just the ones that are insanely in need of everything he has ever created. Its not because it's a bad film, on the contrary it is very intriguing. Its just incredibly slow and the sparse environment lack of color and mostly silent audio makes for a surreal but not very compelling film. There is no soundtrack...At all. There is no real dialog just moments of narration, which of course paints the picture moreso than the acting and mise en scene. Set in the Future, we are treated to a pseudo-documentary based on the scientific workings of a parapsychologist named Luther Stringfellow a famed member of the fictitious Canadian Academy for Erotic Inquiry. His thesis; It is hoped that telepathic groups, bonded in polymorphous sexual relationships, will form a socially stabilizing replacement for the "obsolescent family unit". The subjects will be seven young volunteers who will submit to experimental brain surgery to endow them with telepathic abilities and quench their ability to speak and be recorded daily. The film serves as a record of said experiment. This is where the film kinda falls down. The film gives us some interesting characters to watch, but their silence doesn't allow us to really know sympathize with them. Its like watching an acting class exercise in "emoting" or "mugging". A pantomime this complex needs some form of interpretive audio. While it is interesting to watch the actors go about their "telepathic" play, the drama comes off as stilted due to the highly scientific nature of the narration. Some long sequences that involve little or no narration do not pass quickly and create a kind of dream logic between film and audience. Are we getting what he is showing us? I dunno, as some of the action is so interpretive that we could be on a completely different plane of reasoning than what Cronenberg could be trying to describe. Heady, perhaps, but I think that Cronenberg was not trying to be pretentious, I think he was doing what a lot of first time film students do. Get in over their heads with grand ideas. I can forgive as I have done that myself, which is why I gave it 7 stars. Its not bad its just not for everybody.


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