KOYAANISQATSI, Reggio's debut as a film director and producer, is the first film of the QATSI trilogy. The title is a Hopi Indian word meaning “life out of balance.” Created between 1975 and 1982, the film is an apocalyptic vision of the collision of two different worlds -- urban life and technology versus the environment. The musical score was composed by Philip Glass.

KOYAANISQATSI is Godfrey Reggio's debut film and the first part of his QATSI trilogy. The title, in Hopi Indian language, describes a state of life in imbalance that the film, made between 1975 and 1982, collides with in a bizarre inventory: civilized life has become restless and has distanced itself from man's outer and inner nature. The experimental documentary trusts the condensing images and the music of Philip Glass that accentuates them excellently. The only words remain graphic and set the title and credits of the film.

KOYAANISQATSI is regarded as a contemporary classic in the category 'extraordinary film', has received hardly any notable audience awards at festivals, and the Hopi prophecies recorded in the credits seem rather random. His minimalist film language appears more radical today than it did 25 years ago. The formerly provocative parable of a 'civilization' incapable of self-reflection has already arrived in its apocalyptic reality.

KOYAANISQATSI had its West German debut at the Berlinale 1983, and started for an all-German re-release at the end of 2000. In view of the current shallow cinema entertainment, there is a good chance that the QATSI trilogy will be shown in the cinemas again this year. The DVD edition ( together with POWAQQATSI ) should be mentioned for the film music, which exists even without pictures; unfortunately MGM delivers a bad widescreen version, which does not show the complete film picture.

Uwe J. Haack | via shortlist

Φ KOYAANISQATSI | original soundtrack, 46' | CD, amazon
Φ KOYAANISQATSI | re-recording (1998), 73' | DVD audio, amazon
Φ KOYAANISQATSI | wikipedia.en


credits : screenshot KOYAANISQUATSI, MGM | edited by Φ shortlist

tags : glass reggio film magacine