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breaking away from the darkness of ignorance alex ebbe

there is something magical to the moment when a paradigm collapses and a new reality is set. it begins with the first doubts, when we begin to see some irregularities and unexplainable discrepancies. these eventually lead to the breakthrough, in consciousness and reality. at last the horizon is expanded and the true dimension of the world is revealed. at least until the next shift. i began to think about this when i saw the last scene of the truman show. truman reaches the end of the dome, opens the door in the sky and disappears on the other side. i think it’s a very poetic and surrealistic picture, just beautiful. i dare say, that this moment is inspired by the picture that first appears in flammarion’s book: “l’atmosphère: météorologie populaire” and since became the classic image concerning paradigm shifts. so i spent an afternoon, checking my film library to find some similar scenes, mostly in the science fiction pictures. i never realized how many movies deal with this theme or use it in their plot’s. very few show in such an artistic way as peter weir in truman show, but i still collected some interesting images. this collection shows how this moment of revelation and transition is visualized in some of my favorite movies.

the thirteenth floor

the end of the known reality

the moment of truth

the real world

joseph rusnak, 1999

2001: a space odyssey

the moment of transition

the confrontation with the doppelg채ger

a new reality made up by his own memories

stanley kubrick, 1968

dark city

breaking down the last wall

the sight through the hole in the paradigm: empty space

the real city

alex proyas, 1998


recognizing the first signs of emotion in himself

emotional breaktrough, clearing the window

the city, seen in the ight of his emotions

kurt wimmer, 2002


the choice between paradigms

the awakening

the real matrix

the real world

andy & lana wachowsky, 1999

the truman show

the end of the world

walking the horizon

leaving the paradigm

peter weir, 1998

of course there are loads of other movies that deal with this thematic, for example pan’s labyrinth, the island, thx 1138, 12 monkeys, avalon... just to name some of my favorite. but few also accentuate the visual component of this transitions. the best are surely the truman show and dark city, where there is no camera cut between the to paradigms but a flowing transition. the real world is always in reach, but if there are no reasons to look for it will remain invisible. when the protagonist is mentally ready he takes the decisive step and breaks down the wall to finally recognize the true reality.

20100615 monoelemento

paradigm's end  
paradigm's end  

there is something magical to the moment when a paradigm collapses and a new reality is set. i began to think about this when i saw the last...