Before we get started: Turn off the lights, put on your headphones and watch this at the highest (full-screen) resolution possible!
You know, I always get a bit melancholic thinking about the fact that I will die before any of this might become even remotely possible. I think digital artist Erik Wernquist just captured in a little more than 3 minutes the wonder I have always felt and still feel when confronted with this kind of material … in any format, film, radio, fiction or non-fiction. That particular affliction started even before I was able to read.
The video uses narration by Carl Sagan, an instantly recognizable voice to me. I remember reading Sagan’s book “Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space” and how it fascinated me endlessly. Here’s the entire passage from that book which was used as a basis for this absolutely wonderful short film:
“For all its material advantages, the sedentary life has left us edgy, unfulfilled. Even after 400 generations in villages and cities, we haven’t forgotten. The open road still softly calls, like a nearly forgotten song of childhood. We invest far-off places with a certain romance. This appeal, I suspect, has been meticulously crafted by natural selection as an essential element in our survival. Long summers, mild winters, rich harvests, plentiful game—none of them lasts forever. It is beyond our powers to predict the future. Catastrophic events have a way of sneaking up on us, of catching us unaware. Your own life, or your band’s, or even your species’ might be owed to a restless few—drawn, by a craving they can hardly articulate or understand, to undiscovered lands and new worlds.
Herman Melville, in Moby Dick, spoke for wanderers in all epochs and meridians: “I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas…”
Maybe it’s a little early. Maybe the time is not quite yet. But those other worlds— promising untold opportunities—beckon.
Silently, they orbit the Sun, waiting.”