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Friday, 25 April 2008

engineering of consent

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There's something clarifying about seeing Eckhart Tolle saying "this is now" whilst he makes a point about freeing the mind and enjoying the moment. He's in 1GiantLeap's film of 'what about me?' which deals, in its first chapter, with bombardment.

That's the mediated bombardment of the senses via ueber communication. So living in the Now is about filtering the noise from the system to get back to basics. Its about removing the fear that gets put into the messaging from marketeers to their targets. If this sounds simply Orwellian, it takes the ideas further, into Chomsky's views on the mechanics of control and the need to free the mind and lose the static.

Jamie and Duncan from 1GiantLeap took their leap into this project over a year ago when they started to travel the world to explore themes around media, communication, beliefs, love, freedom and grace. They have built a content rich set of activist ideas, with global influencers and thinkers from many groundings, linked together with the thread of music.

Just watching it I found myself jigging for joy with some of the rhythms and wanting to talk to the television (which I consider a good sign, even if others wish to restrain me).

The show's nature as an encapsulation of many sources makes it more a series of inspirational vectors, rather than a means to fully articulate within the format. What is interesting is that just about every frame adds value. There's so much in the first episode that it serves as an object lesson to other documentary makers with tired formats and repetitive establishing shots.

As is often the way, the schedulers have decide to use the 'after midnight' slot on C4 for this programme, so I guess it attains a somewhat rarified audience (the scheduling also reinforces some of the points made in the programme). Perhaps the word of blog references will help broaden the audience.

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