Plug & Pray (Von Computern und anderen Menschen)


Directed By: Judith Malek-Mahdavi and Jens Schanze
2009 | 91 min
Thursday, November 11: 7:00 pm

LeFrak Theater
Jens Schanze in person

Fifty years ago, computers in their current form were the stuff of science fiction. Today, we rely upon them to control the electric grid, fly planes, store our collective knowledge, fight our wars, communicate with friends, and teach our children. The next generation of technology researchers envision robots as the future. From adult-sized, flesh-toned babysitters to nano-robots that circulate in our cells improving our DNA, robots will be good for us. At least that's the assumption of scientists in labs in Boston, Genoa, Tokyo, and Hamburg as they move relentlessly forward with their cutting-edge research in artificial intelligence, among them the American inventor and futurist Ray Kurzweil, now spending millions on a way to "backup our brains." Biology, as they see it, is flawed and only risks improvement as it merges with these sophisticated machines. In Plug & Pray, one man comes forward to doubt the wisdom of the goal. Joseph Weizenbaum, whose work in A.I. begat the technology used in cruise missiles, urges us to reconsider our wholehearted embrace of technology before robots become as ubiquitous as iPods.

Preceded by Prayers for Peace 

Margaret Mead Filmmaker Award Contender

Co-presenter: Goethe-Institut New York