Sunday, September 9, 2012

Review: "0s & 1s"

Cross posted from InvadeNOLA and MoviePass:

When I was making the transition from elementary to middle school, my family had just gotten AOL - which, at the time, was a major IP. Before this, we had only used the computer as a video game system and word processor. Now, we can chat with users in other countries!  Incredible!

Almost two decades later, the technology has improved; from dial up to DSL, from by the minute to by the month, from chat room to social network, and from computer to phone/tablet/tv. Everyone is now reachable at just the click of a button. Any button.

But, almost two decades later, has the technology improved or worsened our social skills? Is so much access overkill?

James Pongo is about to learn something about himself. He enjoys a wired lifestyle that allows him to stay connected to old friends and keep enough physical distance from the ones he dislikes. But, when his laptop goes missing, James is forced to *gasp* confront people in an effort to get back his all important tool.

"0s & 1s" is the story not only of a generation, but of where we are at right now. There is a relatable anxiety going on here. I'll admit that it's easier for me to send an email or a tweet than to meet the actual person in a real world setting. There is something now uncomfortable and almost unfamiliar about communicating face to face. Whenever I leave the house, I hook my phone on my holster (yes, a holster). When I get home, I check my inbox, my facebook newsfeed and my twitter stream. I keep my browser up for days on end. I'm so attentive to all of this, I even get annoyed when an email isn't responded to quickly enough. Social etiquette? Is that a thing?

The film doesn't just express this problem through the story itself, but through the visuals as well. When the movie begins, and James wakes, a computer boots up, and a desktop appears. His real life is then represented by various digital components - chat room conversations, social network profiles, video games, DVR platforms, texting, viruses, etc. Screens and windows are everywhere. It's so oversaturated, but oh so familiar and comfortable. This IS where we are at.

During Hurricane Isaac, we lost power for two days. I used up my macbook and mp3 player battery power pretty fast. I was almost lost without my online self. But, at my low point, I reached up and picked a book. Then, I opened it, and read a few chapters. I may have lost one connection, but I still had another one; a more important one. But man, was I glad when the lights on my router came back on.

5/5 *'s

>>>> This film will be making its New Orleans debut on Sept. 27th at The Alamo Underground... but only if we can secure at least 10 tickets. Go to Local Screen right now and make this happen!

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