Last week, the four-and-a-half minute "Thunder Perfect Mind" made its debut at the Berlin Film Festival. Directed by Ridley Scott, "Thunder Perfect Mind" is part of a burgeoning genre of cinema — the superlong commercial as short film, in this case created for the introduction of the new Prada fragrance.As every schoolboy knows, "Thunder, Perfect Mind" (and, yes, that is a really cool title) is one of the Gnostic texts discovered at Nag Hammadi. (Read it here.) The Dead Sea Scrolls are probably more famous, but I'm pretty sure none of them are going to be used to sell Prada. (Although .... 4Q184, "The Wiles of the Wicked Woman" ... quick, call Ridley Scott!)
There is no dialogue, just a poem read in a voice-over and set to a smooth, jazzy soundtrack. "The poem was too perfect," says Jordan [Scott, co-director], who happened upon it nearly a decade ago and was saving it for the right project. A Gnostic text probably written around the first century, it prescribes a wisdom that cuts eerily to the quick on more than one level: I am shame and boldness ... I am the substance and the one who has no substance.
Monday, February 21, 2005
The Archon Wore Prada
This is from this Sunday's New York Times Magazine: