This video-essay deformation explores the power of the Kuleshov effect, as I positioned various shots together to evoke meanings of jealousy, lust, and sedation. The rotation of the second image implies opposition in Kelly’s bi-romantic escapades, as she engages with both men and women. While Kelly’s bi-sexuality is a subplot in the series Black Mirror, this piece emphasizes it’s cinematographic prominence in the resemblance of various shots, only obvious through this deformed depiction.

My Desktop Documentary expands on the virtual nature of modern television, drawing from both the plot of episode San Junipero, Black Mirror, as well as the virtual space of the desktop itself. The topic of this piece revolves around the difference between virtual and organic beings, as the protagonists of San Junipero grapple with the decision to join the virtual afterlife. This begs the question of quality of life, as the offer of a virtual afterlife comes with a sacrifice of organic structure. This piece draws attention to our pre-existing tolerance for virtual life, as we increasingly dwell in virtual entertainment, spending more and more of our organic lives on screens.

This essay responds to Dan North’s preceding essay Spectacular Attractions #001: 2001: A Space Odyssey – This Way Up. Challenging his argument that the film is a depiction of man’s conquering of space, I re-examine his terminology in the context of the famous star-gate sequence. North’s points regarding horizontal patterns and symmetry indeed apply to the sequence of unbridled space, suggesting that man’s equipment and navigation of space is less a conquering of space, and instead a submission to its pre-existing disposition.

This piece, my final Video Essay of the semester, explores the reality of Ari Folman’s surreality in his film The Congress. Being one of the most outlandish and incomprehensible films I have ever seen, I was eager to decipher a cohesive conclusion to Folman’s spectacular mess of a narrative. Stemming from the overriding critic of the Hollywood Studio system, I was able to locate several aspects of the film that stray from its dystopian connotation, and point instead to a criticism of reality, rather than surreality. I organized these aspects into chapters; 1. Robin as Robin, 2. The Miramount, 3. Digitalization, and 4. Animation. Each of these techniques, while seemingly fictional, criticize the current studio system, rather than a future one, despite Folman’s meticulously irrational deception of them. It is in this way that the film achieves true depth, in its conjunction of fiction and reality.