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CaveatActually, the film society here was showing not only Koyaanisqatsi but also, on successive nights, the sequels Powaqqatsi and Naqoyqatsi. I went to see them, too, and I have to say, they were absolutely wretched. The only reason I didn't walk out was that I wanted the closure of knowing I'd seen them.
Normally, when I don't like something, I just don't mention it here, but I'd hate to think that someone, somewhere, might see how much I liked the first one and accidentally watch one of the others. It's too late for me, but at least I can apply the idea of detachment.
Since I didn't have anything else to do while I was watching, I wondered what the difference was … why did the other two movies fail where K succeeded? (I'll call the movies K, P, and N for short.)
It took me a while to realize one obvious reason. The images and music in K were amazingly beautiful; the images and music in the others weren't.
Another reason is that in K there was a feeling of sequence, of the development of a theme, even if at first it wasn't clear what the theme was. That was true of both the images and the music, by the way. What about P and N?
The thing that was really strange, though, was that at the end of both P and N, some of the audience was enthused and clapping. I was mystified … what on earth could they be thinking? Maybe I should have stayed and asked, but I didn't, so now all I can do is guess. And, my best guess is, they came in with views that made the content interesting to them … made them look at pictures of money, for example, and see a scathing indictment of global capitalism.
@ October (2003)