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Wednesday
Nov092011

Connected

In all my years of wandering I have seen many things, met many people, and have made countless connections. With every interaction and exchange I felt more and more like I was a part of something. I had people all over the globe who had shared a moment in time – however brief or long – with me. Then the internet came along and these connections became even stronger. Now instead of getting a form letter once a year from the guy I met trekking through Nepal, I could see what he had for lunch in Istanbul while I was in California. It was fun at first, but soon I felt my connections start to overwhelm me and I went into sensory overload. Instead of feeling like part of a group, I felt more and more isolated. By constantly being plugged in, I was actually unplugging from reality and what was really important.

San Francisco based filmmaker Tiffany Shlain decided to explore these human connections and the role technology has taken in forging and maintaining relationships and turned it into her documentary, Connected.  While trying to figure out how everything connects, she also delves into her relationship with her father who was dying of brain cancer during filming. With humor and gutso, Shlain takes us on a unique journey you won’t soon forget.

“Have you ever faked a restroom trip to check your email? Slept with your laptop? Or become so overwhelmed that you just unplugged from it all? In this funny, eye-opening, and inspiring film, director Tiffany Shlain takes audiences on an exhilarating rollercoaster ride to discover what it means to be connected in the 21st century,” it says on the Connected site. From learning how to put down your CrackBerry to turning off your technology for one day, everyone can relate to something in this inspiring film.

“Shlain’s love/hate relationship with technology serves as the springboard for a thrilling exploration of modern life…and our interconnected future. Equal parts documentary and memoir, the film unfolds during a year in which technology and science literally become a matter of life and death for the director. As Shlain’s father battles brain cancer and she confronts a high-risk pregnancy, her very understanding of connection is challenged,” the site continues.

Do we turn our back completely on technology or do we learn how to embrace it without letting it overwhelm us? These are questions Shlain raises in her touching documentary.

Connected is playing at select theaters around the country.

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