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Koyaanisqatsi (1982)

8.3
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Ratings: 8.3/10 from 20,775 users  
Reviews: 178 user | 74 critic

A movie with no conventional plot: merely a collection of expertly photographed scenes. Subject matter has a highly environmental theme.

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Title: Koyaanisqatsi (1982)

Koyaanisqatsi (1982) on IMDb 8.3/10

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Cast

Uncredited cast:
...
Himself (uncredited)
Ted Koppel ...
Himself (archive footage) (uncredited)
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Storyline

Koyaanisqatsi is a documentary (of sorts). It is also a visual concert of images set to the haunting music of 'Phillip Glass'. While there is no plot in the traditional sense, there is a definate scenario. The film opens on ancient native American cave drawings, while the soundtrack chants "Koyaanisqatsi" which is a Hopi indian term for "life out of balance". The film uses extensive time lapse photography (which speeds images up) and slow motion photography to make comparisons between different types of physical motion. In one of the first examples, we see cloud formations moving (sped up) intercut with a montage of ocean waves (slowed down) and in such a way we are able to see the similarities of movement between these natural forces. This technique of comparison exists throughout the film, and through it we learn more about the world around us. The film progresses from purely natural environments to nature as affected by man, and finally to man's own manmade environment, devoid of ... Written by Andrew M. Somers <film@myndex.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

October 4, 1982. More than 5,000 people filled the sold out Radio City Music Hall to experience a remarkable film event. That event was the world premiere of KOYAANISQATSI. Now everyone can share the power of that experience. See more »

Genres:

Documentary | Music

Certificate:

Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Country:

Release Date:

24 August 1983 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Koyaanisqatsi: Life Out of Balance  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The rights to the video and DVD release were complicated. As the film was "presented by" Francis Ford Coppola, the original rights were owned by American Zoetrope. When that company went bankrupt, it was bought up by PolyGram. When it went bankrupt, the rights were snapped up by MGM. See more »

Goofs

About an hour into the movie, the camera operator is reflected in the elevator's glass window as the elevator passes "between" floors while shooting the escalators. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
title card: Translation of the Hopi Prophecies sung in the film: "If we dig precious things from the land, we will invite disaster." - "Near the Day of Purification, there will be cobwebs spun back and forth in the sky." - "A container of ashes might one day be thrown from the sky, which could burn the land and boil the oceans."
See more »

Connections

Referenced in 99 francs (2007) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Very interesting
8 November 2002 | by (AZ) – See all my reviews

This movie has no script, just visions and music. It is very nice to watch. The photography is amazing. This, along with the music, make it a very surreal experience to watch. I bought the DVD and just love it. The music is terrific and the commentary in the special features section is just out of this world.


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