Over the years, hundreds of documentaries have been made on colourful chaotic punk life. The best ones give us a look at the vulnerable, passionate people behind the hard-edged exterior. Penelope Spheeris’ The Decline of Western Civilization does this for LA’s early 80’s hardcore scene, while Joe Strummer: The Future is Unwritten shows an intimate view of the complex person behind one of the most influential punk bands ever. Yangon Calling, a film by German-based filmmakers Alexander Dluzak and Carsten Piefke, now adds to the list, offering a look at the challenges faced by punks living in the capital city of Myanmar. Filmed in 2011, just before the country began undergoing significant socio-political change as it switched to an open economy, the documentary explores this lesser-known side of the country…
My argument with so much psychoanalysis is the pre-conception that suffering is a mistake, or a sign of weakness, or a sign even of illness, when in fact possibly the greatest truths we know have come out of people suffering; that the problem is not to undo suffering or to wipe it off the face of the earth but to make it inform our lives instead of trying to cure ourselves of it constantly and avoid it, and avoid anything but that lobotomized sense of what they call happiness. There’s too much of an attempt, it seems to me, to think in terms of controlling man, of defining him rather than letting him go and it’s part of the whole ideology of this age, which is power mad.
– Marilyn Monroe’s ex-husband Aurther Miller on psychotherapy, after her suicide:
The BBC documentary series The Century of the Self talks about the link between consumerism and Freudian psychoanalysis in the US, showing the latter to be a repressive form of societal control. I found the series incredibly informative and learned some new things about two of my favourite topics, societal constructs and consumerism. Filmmaker Adam Curtis has made a ton of other quality docos, too. Next on my list is a series called The Power of Nightmares. Happy watching!