Popular filmmaker Werner Herzog presented his documentary “Lo & Behold, Reveries of the Connected World” about the advancement of computer technology on Oct. 5 in Reynolds Performance Hall.
The documentary explores computers in 10 chapters, from the first computers to their modern impacts on robotics, human life, the habitability of Mars and the future of technology.
Herzog focused on both the “glory of the net” and its “dark side” by exploring the technological progress in the medical field and the seriousness of internet addiction, shorter attention spans and illnesses from radiation.
“The Internet has the lure of distracting us very quickly because everything is available with a click of your cellphone,” Herzog said. “Your generation may be the lost generation already unless we find a different and better use and understanding of the Internet.”
The film features an interview with billionaire and CEO of SpaceX Elon Musk about establishing a human colony on Mars.
“If we really have to develop a colony on Mars and abandon our planet here, we do not deserve any better,” Herzog said. “It’s a bad idea, period.”
Herzog said he tried to find the most fascinating people to interview and allow them to develop their ideas, even if he disagreed with them.
“He’s always had a search for truth and all his films are very observational and they have a narrative feel,” Visiting Assistant Professor of Digital Filmmaking Stephen Stanley said. “The things that are happening on camera are real.”
Herzog said the film came about when he was approached by AT&T to make a short PSA about texting and driving on YouTube titled “From One Second to the Next.”
Herzog was approached again and asked to do a short film about the internet, but after a few days of filming, he realized that the project had to be bigger.
Herzog said he wanted to offer inspiration to people on campus so students know that what he and other artists have done is achievable.
“We want people on campus to be inspired and learn how people on a professional level work first hand,” Stanley said. “We show work by legendary people so students can say ‘Hey, they started where I started.’”
Herzog was born in 1942 in Munich, Germany and said he didn’t know cinema existed until he was 11.
“[Film] came at me with great vehemence and I’ve never had a career planning ‘What should I do next,’” Herzog said. “[Ideas] come like uninvited burglars in the middle of the night and one of them comes swinging at me, so I better take care of that one first.”
Herzog’s film career dates back to the late 1960s, and since then he’s created feature films, documentaries, short films and television series.
His most popular feature films are “Aguirre, the Wrath of God” and “Nosferatu the Vampyre.”
He is also known for his documentaries “Grizzly Man” and “Cave of Forgotten Dreams.”
Herzog has also made acting appearances in “Jack Reacher” and “Parks and Recreation” and had voice roles in “Rick and Morty,” “The Simpsons” and “American Dad!”