Naqoyqatsi (Naqoyqatsi: Life as War) (2002)
Movie InfoFilmmaker, philosopher and activist Godfrey Reggio completes the film trilogy he began with Koyaanisqatsi and Powaqqatsi in this visually striking examination of the impact of technology upon our culture. Naqoyqatsi is a word from the Hopi language which roughly translates as "war as a way of life" or "a life of killing each other," and in this film Reggio uses a intense barrage of images - most of which have been drawn from existing film footage and then altered using a variety of optical and digital techniques - to express his belief that technology is no longer at war with nature. Instead, we have allowed technology to become the "nature" in which we live, and as it stretches our physical and emotional environment in new and troubling directions, we have created for ourselves a world of greater chaos, violence, and confusion. As with his previous features in this trilogy, Naqoyqatsi features an original score by Philip Glass, featuring cello solos by Yo-Yo Ma; director Steven Soderbergh, a noted admirer of Reggio's first two films, served as executive producer. … More
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Critic Reviews for Naqoyqatsi (Naqoyqatsi: Life as War)
If the message seems more facile than the earlier films, the images have such a terrible beauty you may not care.
At its best, Naqoyqatsi awakens the eyes, but it doesn't really do much to tweak the conscience. It's difficult to feel a sense of outrage while you're in a trance.
If you open yourself up to Mr. Reggio's theory of this imagery as the movie's set ... it can impart an almost visceral sense of dislocation and change.
Pretentious, ponderous and redundant."
Too much of a good thing being bombarded with an hour and a half of trippy images that appear to be lecturing me on how miserable, yet strangely beautiful, modern life is.
The only feeling one comes away from Naqoyqatsi is admiration of its technological virtuosity--certainly not what Reggio intended.
Socially aware, but so nihilistic and fatalistic that it's irrelevant since it is unwilling to push towards the social change that the prior films supported so adamently.
Reggio's ever-evolving style in this film doesn't have the same mesmerizing quality as his previous efforts...but nobody makes more accessible non-narrative conceptual cinema.
Instead of helping us step out of our world, which has become inundated with imagery, Naqoyqatsi gives us more of the same, and our eyes glaze over.
The saturation bombing of Reggio's images and Glass' evocative music ... ultimately leaves viewers with the task of divining meaning.
Like its two predecessors, 1983's Koyaanisqatsi and 1988's Powaqqatsi, the cinematic collage Naqoyqatsi could be the most navel-gazing film ever.
Despite its visual virtuosity, 'Naqoyqatsi' is banal in its message and the choice of material to convey it.
What was once original has been co-opted so frequently that it now seems pedestrian.
It's a little difficult to say go out and see this movie, because it's not exactly a movie - it's more like a picture book for the big screen.
While the juxtapositions are occasionally intriguing, much of the imagery is so hackneyed ... it feels dead to the eye.
Whether you're moved and love it, or bored or frustrated by the film, you'll still feel something.
Audience Reviews for Naqoyqatsi (Naqoyqatsi: Life as War)
I understand that Naqoyqatsi is a premonition of the future and that is why it is so synthetic but that is also the reason why I didn't like it as much as the others, its pretty soulless. I've said that Powaqqatsi was an imitation of Koyaanisqatsi, Naqoyqatsi is it's bastard child. Aesthetically, it's brilliant, or at least to begin with, after a while it does start to resemble a cross between a Yes (the prog rock band) video and something from the early 90's acid house movement. Why didn't they update the music to match? With its limitless subject matter, there was so much missed out too, where was all the post 9/11 footage? Steven Soderbergh's grubby mitts are all over this, it could and should have been brilliant but it is way off the mark, ahead of its time or past its sell by date, either way, it just doesn't work. That said, I would love to see a proper post 9/11 Qatsi film!More
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