Modern Times

1979, 18:56 min, color, sound

In these five "modern narratives" of desire in contemporary consumer culture, Almy constructs an ironic social critique. Each segment focuses on a single concept that is visualized with a simple formal device. With an economy of visual and verbal means, Almy merges voiceovers and images to achieve abbreviated narratives of alienated modern lives. In the first segment, photographic slide projections of individuals and household objects are each labeled "nice." In another, a woman describes a man with an associative series of adjectives progressing from the positive to the pejorative, from "perfect, absolutely perfect," to "boring, absolutely boring." Throughout, Almy presents a picture of personal and social stasis, the commodification of everyday life.

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