“Werner Herzog Sings The Body Electric: His new documentary Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World”
September 12, 2016 by Guest Contributor “I sing the body electric, The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them, They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them, And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the soul.” – Walt Whitman
LO AND BEHOLD: WERNER SHALL DO ALL THE DOCUMENTARIES
Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World (Lo and Behold) stops to smell the roses in the muted and earth shaking beginnings of the Internet. The drastic evolution of our way of life seems to be streaming past us like star scape when you initiate your hyper drive. In the capable and comforting hands of master documentary filmmaker Werner Herzog, you’re given the permission to reflect and momentarily to examine if what we’re doing is jeopardising the human experience.
Review: Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World
Werner Herzog's latest documentary, "Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World" should have been a documentary series, and may have started with that structure in mind. Presented by Netscout, the film offers a survey of the internet, its implications, and the questions surrounding it, utilizing interviews with various experts, probed by Herzog and emitting the wonder and enthusiasm his interviewees are apt to give themselves over to. Illuminating the humanity among internet afficionados may be the film's greatest strength, as its coverage winds up being uneven and at times only skims the surface.
What Werner Herzog’s new film ‘Lo and Behold’ reveals about the internet
As the internet makes its way into more aspects of our everyday lives, Werner Herzog takes a closer look at the ethics of information flows in a new documentary. Alexander Nazaryan meets the German filmmaker
Do not look at the photos of the Nikki Catsouras car crash that remain on the internet, lingering there maliciously despite the efforts of her parents to scrub them through ReputationDefender and, more simply, pleas to human decency. Look at pictures of Rollerblading dachshunds, click through a BuzzFeed quiz about Full House, read an article about Donald Trump’s grooming habits. Take a walk, for God’s sake. The photos of Catsouras’s mangled body hanging out of a car, head split open – as well as the story of how those photos ended up being disseminated on the internet – represent the most debased instincts of humanity. I gave in and looked, thinking they couldn’t be that bad. I was wrong.
It’s almost inconceivable to think of life without the Internet. As if out of nowhere, this remarkable technology quietly emerged from modest beginnings and proceeded to explode, revolutionizing the world in countless ways – as well as in countless ways we have yet to imagine. But, given how unexpectedly this remarkable phenomenon arose, not to mention how it has come to so completely dominate many aspects of our lives, are we fully aware of its current influence and potential future impact? Those ideas are among the many raised in director Werner Herzog’s thoughtful new documentary, “Lo and Behold, Reveries of the Connected World”
Werner Herzog Hacks the Horrors of Connectivity in ‘Lo and Behold
Only a filmmaker like Werner Herzog could make a documentary about the internet and articulate the same existential angst he vehemently expressed over 30 years ago about nature. In what would become the documentary Burden of Dreams, about the making of the feature film Fitzcarraldo (both from 1982), Herzog rants in the middle of the Peruvian jungle: "Nature here is vile and base [...] The trees here are in misery, and the birds are in misery. I don't think they sing, they just screech in pain."
Rating: ***** Werner Herzog brings his dour brand of whimsy to LO AND BEHOLD, REVERIES OF THE CONNECTED WORLD, his consideration of cyberspace. The result is a thought-provoking piece that brings up little-known issues and implications, placing them side by side with the more conventional topics of security and dependence. Indeed, the most arresting moment in the documentary isn’t a security analyst explaining that if were presently engaged in a cyberwar, we would not necessarily know it. Rather, it’s a computer scientist blithely musing on another potential blind spot. That would be the idea that if artificial intelligence arose on the internet, and became self-aware, he didn’t see any reason why it would let us know it’s there, much less consult us about anything it might want to do. It’s as revelatory as it is disconcerting.
?Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World? has Herzog tugging at wires of Web
In 10 micro-chapters Werner Herzog, the director of the classic odysseys “Fitzcarraldo” (1982) and “Aguirre, the Wrath of God” (1972), tackles the rise of the Internet and the perils and promise of a connected world. The scope and the questions are nothing new – “Who is going to be liable if a computer makes a mistake?” Herzog asks about self-driven cars – but the filmmaker’s laid-back yet probing style and quest for getting at the human condition and effects of a digital sphere enveloping society is nothing short of infectious. (It’s viral, if you will.)