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A Machine to Live In (2020)

Yoni Goldstein, Meredith Zielke, United States

A Machine to Live In is a feature-length documentary about the imaginative and material processes of building one’s utopia. The film documents the history of highly controlled modernist planning in Brazil alongside radical projects in cult and mystical architecture. The film’s attention radiates outward from Niemeyer and Costa’s capital, Brasília, to the flourishing landscape of UFO cults, pyramids, monuments, and futurist projects. The film unfolds through Clarice Lispector’s writings on the inauguration of Brasília and subsequent interviews with Oscar Niemeyer. Her literature describes a fraught ideology embedded into the city’s concrete design while imagining ahistorical mythologies that may one day disrupt its order. A Machine to Live In attempts to locate where the desires for myth and reason sublimates in the building of utopian spaces. It collects vignettes and stories from architects and builders as they describe their ideal cities, both real and transcendent.

Duration
89 minutes
Language
OV Portugese/Esperanto
Subtitles
English fix
Video Quality
1080p
Available in
Switzerland