Life Out of Balance

(DVD - 2002)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
Koyaanisqatsi is a Hopi Indian word meaning variously: crazy life, life in turmoil, life disintegrating, life out of balance (the subtitle for this film), and a state of life that calls for another way of life. This film presents a concert of visual images set to the music of Philip Glass that progesses from purely natural environments to nature as affected by man, and finally to man's own manmade environment that is devoid of nature.
Published: Santa Monica, CA : MGM Home Entertainment, [2002]
ISBN: 0792853334
Branch Call Number: DVD 306.4 KOY
Characteristics: 1 videodisc (ca. hr., 27 min.) :,sd., col. ;,4 3/4 in.


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Shown in July 2011.

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Feb 28, 2015
  • Bix_Brannigan rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Crazy Life Out Of Balance!

Without a plot, actors, or dialogue, Koyaanisqatsi, with its hypnotic musical score and remarkable artistic cinematography, was a surreal, spellbinding trip for the eyes and ears.

Koyaanisqatsi contrasted the stunning, tranquil beauty of nature with the vibrant, frenzied hum of contemporary urban society in America. The viewer is treated to the vivid colors and patterns from both of these worlds.

Rich in visual details, much of Koyaanisqatsi's photography was presented (for added effect) in either slow-motion or time-lapse mode. This film was the 1st installment of the Qatsi Trilogy. The 2nd installment came out in 1988, and the 3rd, in 2002.

Koyaanisqatsi was directred by Godfrey Reggio, with cinematography by Ron Fricke, and a musical score by Philip Glass.

Sep 12, 2014
  • Janice21383 rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

For when you're in the mood to have stunning images and random thoughts wash over you. There is a moment -- and you will know exactly when it is -- when the editing, music and imagery heavily suggest "here come the big bad humans." This is a shame, because there is so much more to this film than "nature good; humans bad." If you can ignore this interpretation, and view the footage more neutrally, you will be swept away by complex beauty. A large screen is mandatory.

Apr 04, 2014
  • akirakato rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

This is a 1982 film directed by Godfrey Reggio with music composed by Philip Glass.
The film consists primarily of slow motion and time-lapse footage of cities and many natural landscapes across the United States.
It contains neither dialogue nor a vocalized narration.
In the Hopi language, the word "Koyaanisqatsi" means the following 5 aspects:
1) crazy life,
2) life in turmoil,
3) life out of balance,
4) life disintegrating,
5) a state of life that calls for another way of living.
Translation of the Hopi Prophecies sung in the film is as follows:
"If we dig precious things from the land, we will invite disaster."
"Near the Day of Purification, there will be cobwebs spun back and forth in the sky."
"A container of ashes might one day be thrown from the sky, which could burn the land and boil the oceaans."
Although it is supposed to be a thought-provoking film, I should say that it is getting a bit boring to sit for 86 minutes without hearing any voice.

Aug 22, 2012
  • binational rated this: 1 stars out of 5.


Aug 01, 2012
  • ddonster rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Genius film with great music. Philip Glass's driving score really sticks in your head. I find myself chanting "Koyaanisqatsi" from time to time. Distinctive and memorable imagery, particularly the destruction of Pruitt-Igoe. Godfrey Reggio's sequels don't even approach the singular perfection of Koyaanisqatsi.

Dec 02, 2010
  • hertz rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

A masterful spectacle of both eternal landscapes and life captured on the go in 1983. Entrancing music sets the mood for this spellbinding overview of the complexities of modern life.
Definitely an art film, don't expect a typical Hollywood treatment, this just lets the material speak for itself.
Also recommend the film Baraka, which is on similar themes.

Aug 15, 2010
  • veil_of_evil rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Beautiful film with an amazing score by Philip Glass. Try to find a copy of the IRE fullscreen version. MGM mutilated the original footage to make it fit the widescreen format. The fullscreen version retains the top and bottom of the film and the picture is much sharper. The film was originally shot in 1.33:1 format (4:3).


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app05 Version nodvandig Last updated 2015/03/04 10:57