Thursday, April 3, 2014

General Orders No 9 (2011): A General Lament

Actual V.O.: My buns are vexed, and my soul is pure trouble.
General Orders No 9 (2011)
dir: Robert Persons

"This is some pretentious shit here." - Robert Persons

Take the -Qatsi trilogy. Now remove Philip Glass, and replace him with looooong droning chords. Now remove the global view and localize it to Georgia.  Add in some ruin porn and After Effects filters. And add in a really basic gravelly voice over that acts like a depressed lament for the past, present, and future by a semi-coherent luddite (think Terrance Malick but stupid). Now you have an idea of what General Order No 9 is as an experience.

General Order No 9 is a semi-gorgeous documentary about the progress in Georgia, and how terrible it is for everything. Not that anything was perfect before. There had been war and fires. Generally, progress sucks. Why can't we just live in our log cabins and forget that anybody else exists? Why can't we get back to nature? Look at these random objects I found. Like a railroad tie. Or a fly. Or a plastic die. Yes, I know the plastic die is the result of progress. Yes, I know it wouldn't have existed without cities. But, you're missing the point. Everything is shit.

Look at this nature. This used to be a deer trail. Then it became an Indian trail (dude...Native Americans, please). Then it became a county road. Man, it was good when it was a deer trail. And then there's this house which looks like it burned down. And there's a library full of books that never got cleaned up. This must have been awesome. Maybe it was Sherman that burned down this random-ass building in the middle of the forest. Or, perhaps by accident.

But, look at this small town. It used to be the center of it all. By "it all," of course, I mean Georgia. Because, really, isn't Georgia the center of the universe? There was a bell tower and a weather vane. There were perfect roads that went in cardinal directions. Everything was built around it. Wasn't that great? No cows ever escaped the farms. Too bad it turned to shit.

Progress really screwed things over. Look at these soulless buildings. Man, it really sucks here. Why can't we all spread out and return to nature? Why are we all so sprawling. I mean, it can't be because people keep having multiple kids can it? We don't need to put them anywhere, do we? Bah. Anyways, there's a freeway now too. But, it was made to bypass nature. Here's a Waffle House. Don't those places suck?

The present sucks. It's too crowded and we forgot who we are. But, the past sucked too. When we pushed out the Native Americans. I think that sucked. Well, at least it sucked for them. But, let's not dwell on them too much lest we get even more depressed that we took the land over from them. And then there was war. People burned down our shit. Yeah, sure, we started the war and it was about owning people, but look at what it did to the nature. You fuckers!

I guess I'm just depressed. I don't know what I want. Maybe I just want to go off the grid. But, I like progress too much. Aren't movie theaters soulless now? Why am I making movies? Maybe I'm a bit shiftless myself. I always have been. But, I don't know what to do. I don't want to work in a boring office building of droning CGI white walls. That would suck. It's not an exit.

What do I do? How do I end this? I guess it's over. Fin.

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