Deciphering Dreams Rewired, A Documentary Review

With Dreams Rewired, mass communications is explored through a collection of vintage reels dating from the days of the Lumière brothers (at least) to Thomas Edison’s experiments to pre-war propaganda.

Could this beauty be activating a Bluetooth device in this turn of a century photo? Dreams RewiredCould this beauty be activating a Bluetooth device in this turn of a century photo?

Please check local listings for showtimes near you.

Wannabe futurists and technophiles ought to go see Dreams Rewired, a documentary exploring humanity’s interconnectivity with media. In the changing world of communications, new technical innovations annually appear, but to keep up requires understanding where it has come from — which is what this film excels at showing. One part history lesson and three parts montage, the discoveries of the past (in how the radio, phone and television was developed) is brilliantly explored in contrast to today’s obsession with cell phone culture. Today’s reliance on social media to stay connected with the news around the world can be put into contrast here, but viewers are left to decide on how that affects them instead of this movie making a statement.

This film really wants to explore the role the Internet played through hypermedia, but it stops short of going into detail on the role the military and academic institutions played to bring mass communication to the public. Quite often, our need for exacting data is met with trepidation, and this detail is gently explored through Tilda Swinton’s guiding and lilting narrative. The way she reads the script provided to her by the writing team of Manu Luksch, Mukul Patel, Martin Reinhart, and Thomas Tode brings the charm of Gloria Swanson to life. The way the dialogue moves only affirms the issues people had with technology back in that time, and it carries through to today with the coming innovations. The rhetoric she’s trying to convey can be tough to interpret but it can understood after spending time in deep thought.

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