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World on a Wire

Saturday, Mar 2, 2024 at 1:30 pm

Location: Bartos Screening Room

Dir. Rainer Werner Fassbinder. 1973, 212 mins. 35mm. With Klaus Löwitsch, Barbara Valentin, Mascha Rabben, Margit Carstensen. In German with English subtitles. New German Cinema bad boy Fassbinder originally made the stunning World on a Wire as a miniseries for West German television, and after this it went largely unseen until a 2010 restoration. A vision of the future in 1970s aesthetics, this sci-fi mystery is based on Daniel F. Galouye’s 1964 novel Simulacron-3. It follows cybernetics engineer Fred Stiller (Löwitsch) who is employed by Simulacron, a program that creates simulations of people who don’t know they are not flesh-and-blood in order to predict social, economic, and political events.  Stiller notices cracks in his world and begins to question the corporation that controls it all. Fassbinder said the film depicts “a world where one is able to make projections of people using a computer. And, of course, this leads to the uncertainty of whether someone himself is a projection, since in the virtual world projections resemble reality.” It’s a haunting question that still resonates in the age of artificial intelligence, neural networks, and ChatGPT.  

See World on a Wire and THX 1138 for $20.

Tickets: $15 / $11 senior and students / $9 youth (ages 3–17) / discounted for MoMI members ($7–$11). Order tickets. Please pick up tickets at the Museum’s admissions desk upon arrival. All seating is general admission. Review safety protocols before your visit.