In the past, what people saw on the big screen was always thought to be true. The people, the places and the scenarios that play out were represented solely in truth. In The Man With the Movie Camera, Vertov led the viewer down a trail of falsities and lies, which they were not expected to decipher. In today’s world of flash media, we as a society have become apt at decoding and decrypting lies presented to us as truths in television and movies.
It was presented to the view the acknowledgment that the camera was not just an inanimate object, but also a creature, which through its eyes creates and destroys worlds. Today’s ability to manipulate images and superimpose one image onto another easily is denoted with Vertov’s Keno Eye. The overlaying of one scene onto another creates false scenery and proportions in size. Today we use this knowledge of manipulation to further dissect what is presented to us as truth. If we know that man could never actually be crossbred with an alligator, such “tabloids” presented to us would instantly be noted as false.
Since Vertov’s day we have been able to make many great improvements in science and entertainment. With the ability of high-powered lenses in space we can see further then ever thought humanly possible. We can see down to molecular levels, looking at blood and categorizing humans into groups to show exactly what disease they might encounter in their lives. It’s with such truths that people have come to once again believe what they see. This is where the use of common sense is so vital in the war against what is real and what is simply fake.
One’s ability to use common sense can only go so far in today’s world, leaving us with the need to create more decisive ways of proving what is false and what is real. There have been great strides in the validation of digital photography, where one can see if it has been manipulated after it was pulled from the original source (i.e. digital camera). Also the integrity of film can be double checked by the ability to “blow up” an image (a high powered “lens”) and look for smoothing or rough edges in the image where there should not be any.
One has to be much more of a sleuth today in order to see through the hype and propaganda that is so commonly thrown at them. Sadly however, one normally isn’t able to see past the bright lights and “happy ending” in order to see the truth and sad outcomes in life. Many of today’s youth, and even our elders, have been taken in by the ease and simplicity of simply believing what they are told. The tools to see past the façades are definitely out there, one just has to be willing to deal with the fact that the truth isn’t always what they wanted to hear.