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Koyaanisqatsi (Widescreen)

Lou Dobbs , Ted Koppel , Godfrey Reggio    Unrated   DVD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 64.61
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Frequently Bought Together

Koyaanisqatsi (Widescreen) + Naqoyqatsi + Powaqqatsi (Widescreen)
Price For All Three: CDN$ 89.59

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  • Naqoyqatsi CDN$ 11.99
  • Powaqqatsi (Widescreen) CDN$ 12.99

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Product Description

Product Description

Prepare to experience a truly remarkable filma cinematic masterpiece so extraordinary that it regales the senses, stimulates the mind and actually 'redefines the potential of filmmaking (The Hollywood Reporter). Celebrated director Godfrey Reggio, innovative cinematographer Ron Fricke and Golden Globe-winning* composer Philip Glass have created a 'spellbinding [film] so rich in beauty and detail that with each viewing it becomes a new and different film (Leonard Maltin). Unique profound mesmerizing and thought-provoking (Boxoffice), Koyaanisqatsi contrasts the tranquil beauty of nature with the frenzied hum of contemporary urban society. Uniting breathtaking imagery with a hauntingly evocative, award-winning score, it is original and fascinating (People) one of the greatest films of all time (Uncut). *1998: Score (with Burkhard Dallwitz), The Truman Show


First-time filmmaker Godfrey Reggio's experimental documentary from 1983--shot mostly in the desert Southwest and New York City on a tiny budget with no script, then attracting the support of Francis Ford Coppola and George Lucas and enlisting the indispensable musical contribution of Philip Glass--delighted college students on the midnight circuit and fans of minimalism for many years. Meanwhile, its techniques, merging cinematographer Ron Fricke's time-lapse shots (alternately peripatetic and hyperspeed) with Glass's reiterative music (from the meditative to the orgiastic)--as well as its ecology-minded imagery--crept into the consciousness of popular culture. The influence of Koyaanisqatsi, or "life out of balance," has by now become unmistakable in television advertisements, music videos, and, of course, in similar movies such as Fricke's own Chronos and Craig McCourry's Apogee. Reggio shot a sequel, Powaqqatsi (1988), and is planning to complete the trilogy with Naqoyqatsi. Koyaanisqatsi provides the uninitiated the chance to see where it all started--along with an intense audiovisual rush. --Robert Burns Neveldine --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful Release! June 21 2003
I have rated this dvd 1 star, not the film itself. The film is a masterpeice, and an important piece of art. This dvd version of it is a piece of horse poop!
If you have never seen this film, I suppose the way it is framed in this version might not really bother you, but if you actually CARE to see the film as was originally presented, THIS ISN'T IT!
I am not sure exactly HOW they managed to frame this transfer so poorly, but if ineptitude is a virtue, these folks go to the head of the class.
I won't get into the techical terms of aspect ratio, framing, and the like, but suffice it to say, this release LACKS a good amount of the original image. The image on the screen might be presented in the original apsect, but the framing of that aspect was done in such a way as to "zoom" too far in, thus erradicating, in my estimation, approx. 15-20% of the original image. In a film like Koyaanisqatsi, where the artist's framing of the image is so critical, changing the original image by framing it this way is unforgivable...well...maybe merely a waste of time and money.
The frustrating thing for me was that the "full screen" vhs release actually gives the viewer a closer approximation of the original!
I won't go on and on about it, but like I said before; If you want the original, you're going to have to wait. I suppose there is a laser disc version out there that is framed properly, but that's not really much help!
Save your dough!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Almost Perfect Feb. 16 2004
It is hard to believe this movie is already over 20 years old. I remember seeing it on the big screen when it was first released. It was an unexpected experience to say the least. At the time, this movie left a strong impression on me, not simply a particular image or sequence, but rather the duality of the images and music. That duality is inherent throughout this movie; an observation made only on repeated viewing.
There is the obvious nature vs technology duality. In parallel, this duality can be expressed as god-made vs man-made. There are the old world vs the new world, Hopi cave drawings vs high-tech cinematography and music (the movie we are watching), communication by drawing with coal vs television commercials, ocean waves swelling and receding, cities rising and falling, deserts eroding while factories assemble cars and package massive amounts of food, insurpassable terrain and numerous roads, cars, and airplanes, the slow tide of nature and the fastlane happening all at once. And in the midst of these dual forces is man, a product of the natural world creating the technological world. It is rather like the yin and yang, yang the primary color at present. Technology has usurped first place in defining the world around us and nature is merely a prelude. We are increasingly defined by our technological achievement rather than by our nature. We are gradually defined by our creation, perhaps as god is defined by us. Yet echoes of nature pulse within the concrete fortresses of our technolgy. The roads are like arteries pumping red and white cells to and fro, the factories generate food to help us survive, we record our deeds on film for posterity (the very movie we are watching is a testament of sorts),and we aspire to break free of gravity's tethers reaching for whatever lies ahead.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Painful Feb. 10 2004
Well, I might be bucking the trend of glowing reviews for this 22-year-old "arthouse" flic, but here goes:
While I recognize that the production was ahead of its time in 1982, and elements have been imitated over and over again --with very good results-- by many other filmmakers, I cannot in good conscience recommend this film.
When my wife and I sat down to watch it, we honestly didn't know what to expect. I had *heard* of the film, but didn't know what it was about. With apologies to Seinfeld, it is basically about nothing. Yes, it starts out with dramatic footage of beautiful scenery overlayed with some haunting music (Native Americans chanting "Koyaanisqatsi" over and over again), but my FIRST comment to my wife was: "This looks like file footage."
In my attempt to watch the movie without knowing anything about it first, I hadn't realized that it was 22 years old. It looked like file footage because it WAS essentially file footage. More to the point, the cinematography looks dated.
As the film continues, the beautiful natural scenery is supplemented by scenes that have been dramatically sped up, or dramatically slowed down... images of human activity are generally shown sped up. While some of these scenes were effective in conveying the idea of "Life Out of Balance" (which is what "Koyaanisqatsi" means), I thought that most of them were way too drawn out.
As for the soundtrack, unlike most people I absolutely love ambient electronic music. Most of the time. But not in this film.
Finally, I'll just say that my negative opinion of this film has nothing to do with a general dislike of 'artsy' films. I thought "Winged Migration" was wonderful. "Whale Rider" was fabulous. "Rabbit-Proof Fence" was incredible.
I just thought "Koyaanisqatsi" was painful.
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4.0 out of 5 stars For Open- Minded Viewers With Patience Sept. 14 2003
My interest in KOYA (Koyaanisqatsi) and the Qatsi trilogy was sparked after watching a video called "Baraka" (1993) filmed by Ron Fricke, who is also the DP for KOYA. Fricke, however is not the DP for POWA ("Powaqqatsi [1988]) or NAQO (Naqoyqatsi [2002]). I relate to this form of filmmaking (aka "eye candy") since I too am a visual person working in film media.
KOYA isn't for the movie- goer who uses movies to forget about the world and sit through 87 minutes of fantasy. Nor is it for the lover of explosions, chases and climactic scenes that most filmmakers and studio execs thrive on these days. There are implosions and explosions here. But what sets these apart is that it isn't make- believe. It is happening all the time, in our world right now, even though this movie was created in 1983. While mankind slowly takes control over the world, we see through Fricke's filming that we are actually out of control. And some people can feel rather uncomfortable having such images thrust in their faces.
Watch this DVD only when you've had sufficient rest. If you are at all sleepy (or restless, even), put the disc aside and find something else to do until your mind is clear and you're ready to commit your full attention to KOYA. Otherwise you won't be able to appreciate the film. Also, you may want to hold off watching KOYA if you are living with depression since this film does nothing to lift up one's spirit or offer a sense of hope at the end.
I think of KOYA (and the other films that Fricke embarked on) as a moving painting. So many people will gaze upon it and each one will have a different reaction to it. Look at the many different reviews that have been posted so far. And you'll see that in over 100 reviews posted for KOYA alone, each one is quite interesting and even unique.
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Most recent customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Litterally Photography in Motion
The movie itself deserves to be seen, being what could be called "State-of-the-art Photography in motion".

A must have for those who enjoy the visual arts.
Published 21 months ago by JEFF GAUTHIER
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Great product, in the plastic, brand new ... also shipped pretty much the next day.
cool movie! Interesting documentary for those who love nature and are against technology.
Published on Jan. 3 2012 by Evalyn
5.0 out of 5 stars Koyaanisqatsi.
There is no singular meaning for this movie. "To some its a work of art, to others it's a piece of s$#@," was what I believe Godfrey Reggio stated during his interview for... Read more
Published on Jan. 7 2006 by Catherine J. Hannon
5.0 out of 5 stars koyaanisqatsi
I saw this movie my senior year in highschool, back in 2002. I can honestly say that i have never been moved in such a way by a film as i have been by Koyaanisqatsi. Read more
Published on June 1 2004 by Sinuhe D. Montoya
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing
This movie is amazing. It's not for everybody or for everyday viewing, but it is truly an experience. Read more
Published on April 30 2004 by Brandon Lopez
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Cinematography
More than anything, this is a beautiful movie. It is difficult to judge this movie on anything else because although the title is a commentary on modern day life, the actual movie... Read more
Published on Oct. 14 2003 by Leon M. Bodevin
5.0 out of 5 stars Do you understand the message of the film?
I was 14 years old when I first watched the film. It has been a year now. Only now after watching the film a hundred times do I truly understand it. Read more
Published on Sept. 28 2003
4.0 out of 5 stars Great visuals, lousy soundtrack
Visually, I love this movie. Ron Fricke pioneered a very poetic cinematographic technique, and went on to perfect his art in "Baraka". Read more
Published on Sept. 6 2003 by Mark Cederholm
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Movie Ever Made
OK, my title is a real strong statement, but I stand by it. I can remember the first time I saw it, on a 13 inch TV, on PBS, as I was channel surfing. Read more
Published on June 18 2003 by Scott FS
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