I was fortunate enough to attend the pre-cinema release screening of “Journeys to the Edge of Consciousness” recently at Breaking Conventions 2019. A film by director Rob Harper. Showing the film at this conference was clearly poignant for Rob, as Breaking Convention had provided much support and encouragement for him making the film. The film received an enthusiastic and lively reception. Enclosed are my own reflections.
First of all, considering the film as craft. As a piece of cinema craft, the film used minimalist animation to great effect, giving an uncluttered feeling, this is punctuated by compelling convincing authoritative commentary. The audience is slowly drawn in and immersed into a trip that the director is retelling, which is experienced as initiatory, cathartic and entertaining.
The structure of the film is split into several chapters, each chapter telling significant stories of the modern psychedelic era. The sequence is energetically chosen, not strictly chronological. Chapter one opens with the first LSD trip of Timothy Leary, which creates a wave of energy on which the whole narrative rides. Each chapter is punctuated by seminal commentary from leading authorities on expanded states of consciousness. These include Gabor Maté, Dennis McKenna and Graham Hancock. The audience is drip fed, trip led, gaining important information on the journey to the edge of consciousness, which cannot be taken with impunity.
In all the film is both an invaluable contribution to telling the story of the psychedelic paradigm shift of expanding the Western psyche, the film is also a highly watchable film and highly entertaining and I am sure will be received well by audiences widely.
Journeys is a part-animated feature length documentary, and will be available to rent or buy from September the 19th. Pre-order now at: www.journeysmovie.com
Take an animated journey into the depths of the human mind with Aldous Huxley, Timothy Leary and Alan Watts – exploring three psychedelic trips that together changed them, and Western culture, forever.
Dr Stephen J. Hinde