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From the Koyaanisqatsi crew, a new meditation on humans

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Director Godfrey Reggio is best known for his Qatsi Trilogy (Koyaanisqatsi, Powaqqatsi and Naqoyqatsi), non-narrative films that combine visual images with music to create provocative or contemplative states. Reggio's latest film — made again with collaborators Philip Glass (composer) and Jon Kane (editor) — is perhaps even more stripped-down and basic. It's about us — humans — and is composed of only 74 high-contrast black-and-white shots. Close-ups of faces (most staring directly into the camera) are intercut with images of buildings, hands, swamped trees, a shuttered amusement park. The images are gorgeous, and Reggio's technique (long holds or very slow zooms) allows some images to transform before us. For instance, what initially looks like a spaceship turns out to be an Art Deco office building shot from an unusual angle. But what one makes of the man laughing, or the gorilla's intent stare, is open to interpretation.

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