NOTES ON BLINDNESS: Documentary Screening and VR Experience in NYC

November 17, 2016 | By FRENCH CULTURE FILM

When theologian John Hull (1935-2015) lost his sight at age 48, he embarked upon an audio diary, recording the physical and emotional transformations he experienced, as well as his brilliant, sophisticated philosophical observations on this life-changing event. Middleton and Spinney dramatize Hull’s life and words: “I am concerned to understand blindness, to seek its meaning, to retain the fullness of my humanity.” He becomes aware of what he can experience, perhaps with even greater intensity: listening to music or the sound of rain falling onto different surfaces, dancing with his wife, feeling sunlight on his face, dreams, and memories. Intimate and immersive, the film embraces one man’s successful struggle to employ his intellectual and sensual resources to navigate this great trauma. Oliver Sacks, the great neurologist, wrote that John Hull’s memoir, On Sight and Insight: A Journey into the World of Blindness is “the most extraordinary, precise, deep and beautiful account of blindness I have ever read.”

Written & directed by Peter Middleton and James Spinney
UK / FRANCE • 2016 • 90mins. • In English
Audio description is available at all shows.

Through Tuesday, November 29
Location: Film Forum
Buy tickets here
More information here

Awards in 2016:
Special Jury Prize at San Francisco Film Festival
Winner at Sheffield Doc/Fest

The companion Virtual Reality experience, NOTES ON BLINDNESS: INTO DARKNESS, is being shown at New York’s only VR cinema, Jump Into The Light. It is a multi-platform interactive project created alongside the feature length documentary NOTES ON BLINDNESS. These original diary recordings form the basis of this project, a six-part interactive documentary using new forms of storytelling, gameplay mechanics and virtual reality to explore his cognitive and emotional experience of blindness. Each scene will address a memory, a moment and a specific location from John’s audio diary, using binaural audio and real time 3D animations to create a fully immersive experience.

Arnaud Colinart is a Producer at AGAT Films & Cie / EX NIHILO. He is particularly interested in applying new technologies and interactive mechanisms in the conception of narrative works, whether documentary or fiction. His productions include the video game Type:Rider (Appstore Editor’s Choice, SXSW 2014 Gaming Award Nominee, Webby Award Nominee – Best Mobile Game, Best Visual Design), the transmedia experience ‘Hubot Market’ and ‘Atsugi Robotics’ for the Swedish TV series ‘Real Humans’ and recently the graphic tribute to the TV series Peaky Blinders by the American designer Nigel Evans Dennis ( Lovie Award 2015 – TV Category & People Lovie Award 2015).

Amaury La Burthe earned a masters in acoustics and signal processing at IRCAM in Paris, before working as researcher for Sony-CSL, and as lead audio designer for video games company Ubisoft. He specializes in both the creative and technical aspects of sound design and interactive experience creation. He founded the startup, AudioGaming, focusing on creating innovative audio technologies and immersive experiences.

November 11-19
Location: Jump Into the Light
RSVP here
Find out more information here

Awards in 2016:
Winner Storyscapes Award at Tribeca Film Festival
Best Experimental Experience at Kaleidoscope World Tour

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