In Complete World

Friday, October 17, 2008 - 7:00pm
A pre-election screening of Shelly Silver's latest work. Find out what people are really thinking in the days leading up to November 4... In Complete World is a 53-minute documentary made up of street interviews shot throughout NYC. Mixing political questions ("Are we responsible for the government we get?") with more broadly existential ones ("Do you feel you have control over your life?), the film centers on the tension between individual and collective responsibility. The film can be seen as a user's manual for citizenship in the 21st century, as well as a glimpse into the opinions and self-perceptions of a diverse group of Americans. It is a testament to the people of NYC in this new millennium, who freely offer up thoughtful, provocative and at times tender revelations to a complete stranger, just because she asked. Shelly Silver has produced an extensive body of work that explores and challenges our deepest held preconceptions of national identity, power, race, gender and sexuality. Her work is funny, poetic, formally beautiful and surprisingly accessible. Silver's work often focuses on moments of tension and change, as in her landmark 1994 film Former East/Former West, questioning what it means to be German after the Reunification, or 37 Stories About Leaving Home, an intimate exploration of change over three generations of Japanese women or Small Lies, Big Truth, a retelling of the Lewinsky/Clinton affair, which utilized the Starr Report to examine issues of power, language, and the right to privacy. By appropriating the structures and codes of mainstream media, her films reveal how contemporary identity is both reflected and constructed by television and cinema, and how we negotiate cultural narratives to arrive at definitions of the self. Her work has been shown extensively throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. Video courtesy of Video Data Bank.