Directed by Manu Luksch, Martin Reinhart, and Thomas Tode, the acclaimed film essay “Dreams Rewired” — with playful, inimitable narration from Tilda Swinton — pieces together technological and futuristic images from the scientific, dramatic, educational, erotic, experimental, and political films of yore to create the sensation of time travel.
As Swinton describes our historical moment, “Dreams Rewired” draws connections to prior ones, by reference to filmmakers from Thomas Edison to Dziga Vertov: the origins of cinema, the telephone, and the computer, for instance, each in its own time an unimaginable leap forward. The result is a scintillating marriage of form and function, in which Luksch, Reinhart, and Tode offer a reminder that the modern world’s anxieties are nothing new — and no less dangerous for having precedents. (After all, the footage is drawn primarily from films produced between 1880 and 1930, a period of immense technological change that also witnessed the transition from the Gilded Age to the Second World War.)
Now, after a run at New York’s Film Forum in December, “Dreams Rewired” is coming to a screen near you. After a nationwide theatrical rollout, the film will be available on VOD and DVD (Icarus Films, $29.98) on March 22.