There are many visions of where humanity will be in the years and centuries to come. And there are a whole genre of films and literature have been built around those visions; futurist predicting where we’ll be, designers glimpsing what is to come. We’ve seen hints of the positive, with Roddenberry’s Star Trek, the dystopia with the world of Blade Runner. And there are novels and films that have covered everything in between.
Writer/director Peter Joseph delivered the Zeitgeist Trilogy. And he has adapted his own work, The New Human Rights, as a documentary from the future. It looks back at how we survived the 21st and early 22nd centuries. By then, we have transitioned through the socio-economic problems that have plagued are society. Those plagues, by the way, seem to be coming to a boil in the world around us at this very moment.
The Zeitgeist series of films are fascinating in a distracting way, offering an interesting look at the state of the world. It steeps itself in conspiracy theories, and doling out proposals and suggestions for the betterment of humanity. It works for the trio of documentaries. But this new entry, which portends to be the first of a trilogy, feels like folly, and the height of hubris. As Joseph not only adapted his own work, he produced, directed, edited and composited it all himself. Oh, and helped on the score as well.
Using a level of green screen and desktop special effects that borders on the embarrassing, Joseph throws us into the future. It has a series of talking head interviews (with actors playing future teacher, advisers and the like). They guide us, over the course of an interminable two hours and forty five minutes. We apparently need those guides through all the things that happened. It tells us what we should do as a species if we are going to survive and become better than we are.
There was an appeal, at least from a curiosity level, as to what Zeitgeist was, and how it looked at the world. That is blatantly missing from Joseph’s new effort. And instead it delivers the sensation of being preached to.
Humanity as a society may not be in the best place right now. And yes, there is corruption, hatred and greed, but I do believe there is a shift coming. I don’t, however, need this film (or its proposed follow ups) to tell me about it. This one, to my thinking is best to avoid.
- Release Date: 10/6/2020