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Forum Post: "Information" ; Documentary Maker & 'Video Essayist', Adam Curtis - some recommended works.

Posted 6 years ago on Feb. 21, 2012, 5:10 p.m. EST by shadz66 (19985)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

I append the following 4 Documentary Series, all by UK Documentary Maker and 'Video Essayist', Adam Curtis - who is simply without parallel or peer in this field (imho).

These documentaries series comprise 13 hours of viewing in total and I do recommend that they are watched with lengthy breaks to assimilate and absorb the information therein without too much 'psychic shock'.

Anybody engaging with these will essentially have done a course of study into 'critical thinking' into issues that are 'behind the propaganda veil'. I'd be pleasantly surprised if such a course was even available in many of our centres of (so called) learning !! Thus :

  • 1) "The Century of the Self" : http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/the-century-of-the-self/ , (2002). The four films are about how those in power have used Freud’s theories to try and control the dangerous crowd in an age of mass democracy. Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, changed the perception of the human mind and its workings profoundly.

  • 2) "The Power of Nightmares" : http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/the-power-of-nightmares/ , (2004). The three films compare the rise of the American Neo-Conservative movement and the radical Islamist movement, making comparisons on their origins and noting strong similarities between the two.

  • 3) "The Trap" : http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/the-trap/ , (2007). The Trap is a series of three films that explains the origins of our contemporary, narrow idea of freedom. It shows how a simplistic model of human beings as self-seeking, almost robotic, creatures led to today’s idea of freedom. This model was derived from ideas and techniques developed by nuclear strategists during the Cold War to control the behavior of the Soviet enemy.

  • 4) "All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace" : http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/all-watched-over-by-machines-of-loving-grace/ , (2011). Another three film series, about how humans have been colonized by the machines they have built. Although we don’t realize it, the way we see everything in the world today is through the eyes of the computers. It claims that computers have failed to liberate us and instead have distorted and simplified our view of the world around us.

I have found the above personally liberating and recommend them with humility and sincerity and I provide the above links in the spirit of "Fair Use" and of sharing 'a good thing' ;-)

Re. Adam Curtis, please see : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adam_Curtis .

respice ; adspice ; prospice ...



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[-] 3 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Well shadz, 4 hours down, 9 hours to go.

Just watched all of "The Century of the Self". Very revealing and very depressing in the extreme. Individuals revealed to be essentially irrational and selfish creatures, supported by a hundred years of scientific and business research that bears this out. Big business manipulation of those irrational subconcious desires for profit. The only conclusion that can be drawn is that the human race is a doomed species. The only animal capable of "advanced" rationality gives up said rationality in favor of selfish base desires being fulfilled, and not only purchases products to fulfill individual selfishness, but purchases (votes) politicians into office in support of personal selfishness rather than any sense of moral conscience as to what is best for society and the greater good (because there IS no greater good than individual self-gratification). By this view, there IS no morality. No sense of self-sacrifice for a higher purpose, because there IS no higher purpose than personal self-gratification. Business and politics exists only to fulfill that gratification.

I say this honestly and with full conviction: if this is what the human race has come to after millions of years of evolution -- a supremely ego-centric animal that exists for no other purpose than to have every imaginable desire and pleasure gratification fulfilled -- then I say the sooner we destroy ourselves into complete extinction the better off the rest of the animals on this planet will be.

These films have held a VERY UGLY mirror up to the face of humanity and have revealed an ignoble creature fundamentally flawed in the extreme. Up to this point, I had always held a glimmer of hope that the power of rational thought might somehow, someday, transform society for the better. What a naive, gullible fool I have been. Just because I hold rationality as the crowning achievement of homo sapiens doesn't mean that the race, en masse, holds that view. I can think of no more shameful revelation regarding our complete and utter failure as a species than what these films accurately, and sadly, reveal.

Game over. Just a matter of time now. Somebody somewhere give me some reason to hope.

[-] 3 points by shadz66 (19985) 6 years ago

Wow, 'Ud' !!! Chill bro' !! & http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tjMnhiCUnr0 !

Life is for Living and for Loving : There is honour in just standing up and resisting : In NOT Quiescing !

The world is full of your brothers & sisters ; of friends & comrades that you just ain't met - yet !!

The spring is barely here ... a Global Summer of Resistance and Occupation Await !!!


Nil Desperandum et per ardua ad astra ...

[-] 2 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Shads, I can take nothing positive away from what I have just watched. To be fair, I haven't watched the other 9 hours yet. Will they provide hope? I am usually not a depressed person, but these shows want me to get back on my Zoloft.

I am not kidding.

[-] 2 points by beautifulworld (22876) 6 years ago

So far I've watched an hour of "The Century of the Self" and I think there is much to learn there. It helps us to understand how we got to this point. If we can understand that then maybe we have a better chance of doing something about it. That's the positive to take away.


[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 6 years ago

Shit dude. 'The Power of Nightmares' was the one I watched first and then the others but an hour at a time. If you watch them back to back without break then I'd speculate that it may well be a wee bit too much.

Calm, bro'. Have a cup of tea & come back to it another day !!

consilio et animis ...

[-] 1 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

You're probably right.

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 6 years ago

Cool ;-) Lift your spirits bro' with http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tn9p_mTHEEM !!!

pax, amor et lux ...

[-] 2 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Thanks shadz. I liked this vid since it's from back in my day. Feeling a little better now. Fk Freud, his nephew, Big Business psychogreed, supreme ego trip selfishness, politician do-anything-to-get-elected amoral asswipe and eat it.

People are beautiful individuals. I forgot that. Why do they behave worse than animals in the collective then? Mystery. Needs an answer.

[-] 1 points by shadz66 (19985) 6 years ago

The Later vids may point towards answers or maybe not ... but go easy now !!! LOL !! et fiat lux !

[-] 1 points by Quark2 (109) 6 years ago

Some who did not fight Brought tales of old to light. My Rocinante' sailed by night On her final flight. To the heart of Cygnus' fearsome force We set our course. Spiralled through that timeless space To this immortal place.

Rush lyrics that give me hope to know not all is lost & some are willing to die for virtue. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

[-] 2 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Thanks for that. Appreciate it. I am now in recovery.

Watch the four documentaries with extreme caution. Rated X. Mature Audiences Only. Possible therapy and/or chemicals required post-watch. Do NOT view before bedtime. Nightmares possible. May trigger destructive impulses in mental defectives. Remove all suicidal tools before viewing. Have Sesame Street videos on stand-by. Street meds and/or heavy pharms/EST may be required.

[-] 1 points by Reneye (118) 6 years ago

I'm a half hour into "The Century of the Self", and I have to take a short break but will go back to it. Please hang in there Underdog. I see what you see, I almost didn't watch it because I felt such fear within the first 5 minutes.

I also believe and have seen humanity go through a very consolidated kind of evolution these last couple of years....a mass cognitive realization that evolving at a quicker pace has become necessary to surpass the damage that has been done to us, an unwitting victim of the few who used this information to further their own lives at our expense. The people are rising to this monumental evolution by leaps and bounds. Love and humanity will prevail.

[-] 2 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Take frequent breaks. Watch all 4 episodes, but not all at once like I did, otherwise too overwhelmingly depressing. Brain damage possible. Zoloft alert. Danger Will Robinson Danger!!!!!

Shadz has helped me a bit. Need to watch Bugs Bunny and Mister Rogers' Neighborhood and I will be ok.

[-] 1 points by Reneye (118) 6 years ago

Lol !! Sage advice, thank you. Nothing wrong with a glass of wine either! Bugs Bunny rocks!

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (33496) from Coon Rapids, MN 6 years ago

Check GirFridays post on Walker. That is cheerful.

We are moving forward.

Hang tough.

[-] 2 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Thanks. Will do. I am in shock after what I have just seen. Need to get something else in there. The four films that comprise "The Century of the Self" are for true adults only. Maybe I just found out I'm not one. Always thought I was.

[-] 2 points by shadz66 (19985) 6 years ago

Hope that you are on the mend :-) & also :

a) The Voices Of East Harlem - "March Across This Land" : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TL0J03ngA50

b) Curtis Mayfield - "Keep On Keeping On" : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t-l91O9VxN0

c) Curtis Mayfield - "We Got To Have Peace" : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4QglEbgON9o

d) Curtis Mayfield - "Move On Up" : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Z66wVo7uNw&feature=related

e) Marvin Gaye - "What's going On" : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H-kA3UtBj4M&feature=related

per aspera ad astra ...

[-] 1 points by Underdog (2971) from Clermont, FL 6 years ago

Thanks shadz. Good stuff. Doing better.

[-] -1 points by DKAtoday (33496) from Coon Rapids, MN 6 years ago

You would not be sickened if you were not an adult.

Keep-on Keepin-on. I am out. Catch ya later.