Saturday, July 20, 2019

Welt am Draht in the Lancet Psychiatry

The 1 August issue of medical journal the Lancet Psychiatry includes "Cryin', talkin', sleepin', walkin living dolls" - my review of Welt am Draht (World on a Wire), the 1973 sci-fi TV series directed by Rainer Werner Fassbinder and recently reissued on Blu-ray.
“I've been observing Stiller for some time very closely”, says pipe-smoking psychologist Dr Franz Hahn (Wolfgang Schenck) in the second episode of Welt am Draht (World on a Wire), first broadcast on West German television in 1973. “He's suffering from a case of acute paranoia. He's an extreme example of psychological degeneration. He is in so many words…not responsible for his actions.” Fred Stiller (Klaus Löwitsch) sits across from him, and doubts anything in the room is even real. The cigarette his boss is smoking or the chair in which he sits is, says Stiller, an idea of an idea of an idea...

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