In 20,000 Days on Earth, Nick Cave plays Nick Cave in a
fictionalised documentary of a day in the life that takes in a trip to his
therapist, lunch with bandmate Warren Ellis, drives around Brighton with Kylie
and Ray Winstone and a gig at the Sydney Opera House.
The Possibilities are Endless is a documentary of the true
story of how Edwin Collins suffered a stroke that almost killed him and how his
partner Grace Maxwell helped him recover.Edwin’s son plays him in re-enactments, some of which are beautifully
realised expressions of how Edwin felt, lost at sea, drowning in black water.
Pulse Productions, who are behind both films, specialise in
films about music and musicians.Both
films are part reality, part imagination, much like the best songs.Like Madonna says of her lyrics, “I’m
constantly inventing scenarios that are a combination of something I know and
something I imagine. “
A couple of years ago the American writer David Shields
wrote Reality Hunger, a collage book of insights, excerpts and quotes about how
reality rather than fiction was driving much contemporary art and music, especially hip hop. Shields couldn’t
bear to read novels anymore as he felt there was no truth in them.
Both these movies are about truth and what truth feels like.
From Wikipedia: "In Vanity Fair, Elissa Schappell called Reality Hunger "a rousing call to arms for all artists to reject the laws governing appropriation, obliterate the boundaries between fiction and nonfiction, and give rise to a new modern form for a new century.""
Epic Thread tells the story of a girl who decides to find
out how her T-shirt was made by following a loose thread first back to the factory
where it was made and then to the farm where the cotton was grown.Along the way she discovers that no child
labour was involved in its production and that it was grown in a sustainable
It is a very modern parable that taps into a growing trend
towards more socially aware consumer behaviour.
People are changing.They are becoming investigative consumers, curious about the politics
around the things they spend their money on and the real world behaviour of the
companies behind the brands.They are
not blithely accepting the traditional sources that inform brand choice –
advertising, reviews, celebrity endorsement etc.They are digging around themselves and asking
friends or others sources they trust.
In Kill the Consumer, Jon Alexander shows the positive
effect of people adopting the label “citizen” rather than “consumer”.One study took a sample of people and asked
half to fill in something called the Consumer Reaction Study and the other half
to do the same for a Citizen Reaction Study.The questions were the same but the “citizens” cared more about society
and the environment.
Meanwhile, Andy Wheatley thinks it is time for brand owners
and advertising agencies to start encouraging citizen behaviour.He argues brands, as a powerful global force,
could make a massive difference if they encouraged citizen rather than consumer
Ultimately, it will be people themselves who decide whether
they are looking at life through the filter of one label or another.Since the defining event of the great crash,
more and more people have been adopting a less wasteful, destructive and
reckless lifestyle.They have paid off
debt rather than racking it up; they buy local and value quality and
craftsmanship in everything from clothes to beer and coffee.Some brands picked up on this quickly and
some bigger ones were slower, but there doesn’t seem to be any return to
pre-crash bling consumerism.
Why haven't we met any aliens? According to Geoffrey Miller:
"Basically, I think the aliens don’t blow themselves up; they just get addicted to computer games. They forget to send radio signals or colonize space because they’re too busy with runaway consumerism and virtual-reality narcissism. They don’t need Sentinels to enslave them in a Matrix; they do it to themselves, just as we are doing today."
From Seed Magazine: http://seedmagazine.com/content/article/why_we_haven