Sympathy, Machines and Mind Boggling Brilliance

I have just finished watching Adam Curtis’ stunning new documentary . I use the term ‘documentary’ loosely. For me, his films are closer to visual poetry than any traditional documentary structure. More importantly, his films offer a release from the daily bombardment of quasi-voyeur-porn docu-soap outlay that amounts to factual programming these days. I have always had a social conscience and regard myself as quite left wing. Ayn Rand was one thinker I avoided like the metaphorical plague. How could selfish, egotistical and emotionally bankrupt individuals benefit society? I knew little to nothing about her. I didn’t care to know. Objectivism my arse!

If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject.
Ayn Rand.

After watching the film I felt sorry for her. I actually sympathised with somebody who would rid ethical principles of all traces of human kindness and altruism. It turns out that Ayn was just as human and prone to emotional responses as you or I. There was a real sense of tragedy that emerged from Cutis’ treatment of her personal life.

Leaving Miss Rand aside, I cannot recommend the film highly enough. Do I fully understand it? No! Does it matter? Hell no! If you have never watched a Curtis film then you are in for a treat: visually arresting, meditative, educational and often unexpectedly humorous.

Finally, the BBC have justified my £12 per month licence fee. Keep up the good work.

2 Responses to “Sympathy, Machines and Mind Boggling Brilliance”
  1. decapo says:

    I also felt sympathy for Ayn Rand. When she was rejected by the object of her desire her human frailty was exposed. She had lived up to her own model of her philosophical ideology of Objectivism, living the role of the “heroic egotist” for so long. Humans beings are at their most vulnerable when in love and it is refreshing to see that even a woman like Ayn Rand was no different. For me her story serves as another example that there cannot exist philosophical ideologies that encompass all mankind and serve successfully as a real life guide for all of her subjects. At the most there can only exist personal philosophical ideologies to be adhered to by their creator. Even then, as we see in the case of Ayn Rand the creator will inevitably struggle and finally fail in executing it….
    And I never knew Rand was such an icon for the Silicon Valley crew before watching this!

    • Hello decapo!
      It is great to hear your opinion and also a little disconcerting when responses to posts are more insightful than the original articles. I am not privy to your schedule. However, should you have plenty of free time you should get into the blogging. You remind me of a friend in the old country who was fond of legal highs and frequented a particularly green bar. Set up a blog. I will certainly read it!!!

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