Change movies with your mind: the future of the cinema?

"The Moment" a movie which you can be a director thanks to your brainwaves

Change movies with your mind: the future of the cinema?

Richard Ramchurn, a graduate of the University of Nottingham, has decided to put the bar higher with "The Moment". In this film, the spectators have the ability to direct the film with the help of nothing but their brain waves.

Leer en español: Cambiar películas con tu mente: ¿el futuro del cine?

The idea that the spectator is the one who decides the plot is not entirely new. If we take a look at the history of cinema, we can find in it unique (and even strange) efforts on the part of the creators to allow more interactions between the audience and the films.

"Tender Loving Care", released in 1998, is among the most popular examples of interactive film. Among the scenes, the actor John Hurt appears guiding the audience through the story and asking questions that must be answered by the audience through a questionnaire, and once it concludes the film is subtly adapted to match the wishes of the spectator.

According to the newspaper The Verge, Fox is making an interactive film based on the Choose Your Own Adventure books in which, through an application that will allow theatergoers to choose how the story unfolds as they watch, there will not be two identical movies.

However, "The Moment" is the first film that uses technology to create a unique experience. According to "Born To Engineer", the movie, which is almost 30 minutes long, works by having the viewer use the NeuroSky MindWave device, which is committed to tracking its level of attention by measuring electrical activity. This information is then feedback to a computer that analyzes the data to alter the flow of the background music and the editing of the film.

According to MIT Technology Review, while finishing the editing work, Richard began to project it in a small trailer near Nottingham, where six to eight people could sit and watch it at the same time: only one of them controls it while the others observe.

Ramchurn related the cuts in the movie with the natural flow of attention data, which changes every six seconds. This means that the user can change the shots every six seconds, for more than 27 minutes, creating 100 trillion of different versions of movies that it could watch.

"Allowing the viewer to effectively edit the film -either by consciously thinking about it or by naturally responding to what's happening on screen- creates a sort of two-way feedback loop. The film changes because of how you feel, and the way you feel changes because of the film," said Ramchurn.

The film, located in the future, questions how we can rebel against surveillance capitalism when our thoughts are monitored. It is inspired by current movements of technological giants like Google and Elon Musk, who believe that for humanity to survive the coming of age of artificial intelligence, people will have to increase their minds with neuronal implants; and it wonders what happens to people who do not fit into this new world. Today, June 7, "The Moment" will be screened at a film festival in Sheffield, England.

Latin American Post | Luisa Fernanda Báez

Translated from "Cambiar películas con tu mente: ¿el futuro del cine?"

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