Godfrey Reggio was uncomfortable using the latest film-making technology considering that his theme was back-to-basics living. However, he countered this by realizing that technology is unavoidably ingrained into our way of life. See more »
Koyannisqatsi wasn't a copy of anything, so why would anyone expect Powaqqatsi to be a copy of it? Fortunately, I saw this film on the big screen without seeing its predecessor, and I was delighted. The movie begins with a shot of an African diamond mine. You see a miner ascending a ladder in slow-motion, carrying a bag of mud on shoulders, accompanied by a heavy, pounding music. The effects and the music work together to highlight the miner's tiredness and strain. Other images follow, most of them from the "third world." In each case the focus is not a thing, but a quality.
Powaqqatsi revolutionized my concept of the world -- Go ahead and laugh! The film shows a vastness and variety and energy in the world that was beyond anything I could have imagined when I went into the theater. Everything is presented for what it is; there's no Western narrator to reassure you and tell you what everything means. There is perhaps no higher praise for a film than saying it changed the way I think, and Powaqqatsi deserves that praise.
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