Hot Docs – Day One


Maja Borg’s Future My Love brings together the essay film (with a voiceover that is contemplative and ruminative in a Marker-esque way), the archive film (with images drawn from a mid century repository of imaginings of the future), and the poetic documentary (with its ostensible subject, Jacque Fresco’s radical reimagining of the future, complimented by a more oblique tale of love and loss).

Fresco is a 95 year old visionary whose work since the 50s and 60s has involved rethinking the social, political, spatial, and architectural organization of the present. Neither anarchist or communist, Fresco is absolutely committed to science and reason and his involvement, first with the Technocracy movement and then with his own Venus Project, is grounded in an anti-monetarism that identifies competition as detrimental rather than beneficial to social life.

I’m not sure I fully understand all the ins and outs of Fresco’s philosophy, but he’s a compelling man, not least for the way that he combines humility and passion. Watching the film I was reminded of Franco “Bifo” Berardi’s examination of “the slow cancellation of the future.” As social and political change seems less and less possible as the world economy ossified into an unworkable but intransigent model, it becomes difficult, or at least exhausting, to imagine a different kind of future. Someone like Jacque Fresco, whose mid century futurism is a fully developed working out of a different world, seems an extraordinary figure in a present that dominant characteristic of which is a kind of impoverishment of the imagination that makes this very kind of thinking impossible.

I haven’t even scratched the surface of the film here, but I should also say that it is moving as well. Fresco isn’t bitter or resentful that his visions have not come to pass, but places his trust in a future that will arrive sometime after he is gone, but which he can see, at least in part in the scale architectural models that he builds in his Future Lab.

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2 Responses to Hot Docs – Day One

  1. Ben Kempas says:

    Thanks for the review. Just one thing: His name is Jacque Fresco, not Franco. You might want to amend that.

  2. aab says:

    Thanks Ben! Made the change. One of the hazards of writing on the fly and in between screenings!

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