Inaugural Mystery Movie Night

Mystery Movie Night . The premise is simple. Every month a different guest host will present a film of their choice, but with a catch: we will not divulge the name of the film in advance of the viewing. What we’ll do instead is provide a vivid description of the movie for you to mull over.

March 25 2017

The first presenter Dan Adleman has this to say about his chosen film:

The recent film that I will be presenting is set in 1960’s small-town America. Minnesota, to be precise. The film presents a profound moment of rupture, when the loose media network constituted by the gramophone, television, the telephone, and recreational drugs begins to coalesce and generate new sensibilities. These emergent psychedelic horizons of experience were especially noteworthy in that they were at cross-currents with the longstanding post-WWII suburban American homeostasis and even longer-standing Judeo-Christianic worldviews.

“Media determine our situation,” wrote media philosopher Friedrich Kittler in the mid-1980’s. Even now, in the digital 21st century, this is a remarkably subversive idea, given the value accorded to “freedom” in contemporary liberal democracies. And yet, according to Kittler, the primordial condition of the very experience of that putative freedom is the dense electronic media environment that saturates, enables, and constitutes most everything we do.

Beset by the onslaught of modernity, the film’s protagonist is placed in an increasingly untenable position. As a scholar whose occupation it is to analyze and resolve ambiguity, he is now compelled to confront the irresolvable ambiguities of the beguiling world he inhabits. This maddening situation propels this secular, rational individual on a kind of Pilgrim’s Progress to ascertain whether it is still possible to find meaning in a seemingly godless world. A world where everything that goes by the name of Truth is found to be lies.