What is the best way of portraying day-to-day work in a massive computer centre serving the financial community of Zurich? The answer is: to spend months actually being there, observing it from inside, compiling and classifying 70 hours of film and then editing this material into seemingly unrelated components – without the slightest commentary – by means of hectic montage, cutting and slashing until the whole grand system dissipates to dust. The result is an absurd serial ballet à la Jacques Tati, presented in staccato format. This method highlights the stress, alienation, materialism to which the modern world of the almighty computer exposes us.
Thomas Imbach and his cameraman Jürg Hassler set themselves the mammoth task of doing just that: producing fragmented images of phone calls, nervous fingers gliding across keyboards, side-long glances, briefings, data, banking jargon and automatic gestures – all in order to highlight (not without bitterness) the loss of humanity inherent in the reign of marketing and electronics.
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