A blog dedicated to art, entertainment, language, and culture.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

From One Second to the Next

Normally, when a company tries to send a message to young people, they are tempted towards ham-handed hiptitudes.  "How do reach the youth of America?  Let's make a rap about not smoking!"  But there was no condescending from AT&T when they asked the brilliant filmmaker Werner Herzog to create a short documentary about the harm done by texting and driving.  Werner Herzog is not "hip," but he makes some of the most incredible films and fascinating documentaries.

A word to the wise, if you want to live in blissful ignorance, From One Second to the Next is not for you.  It will probably leave you unable to even consider texting while driving ever again.  The documentary begins with a girl describing how her younger brother was swept out of her hand by a car before she even knew it was there.  And as each story unfolds, there is an overarching senselessness about the accidents.  The text messages were insignificant compared to suffering they caused.

At times, Herzog's documentary can be a real challenge to sit through.  And that certainly separates it from other company-sponsored PSAs.  Unlike the purity ring style "It Can Wait" pledge that is AT&T's other attempt to discourage texting and driving, this film does not act young.  It does not pander to one's age demographic.  It does not pull punches, and that is precisely why it should be viewed by as many people as possible, especially teens.

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