William S. Burroughs in the Dreamachine (2015)
1h 10min · Documentary · 14 April 2015
The Dreamachine, invented in 1959 by poet Brion Gysin and mathematician Ian Sommerville, is possibly the most effective of all brainwave simulators, triggering mental aberrations that are comparable to drug intoxication or dreaming. When writer William S. Burroughs (Naked Lunch) introduced the Dreamachine to a wider audience through interviews in the 1970s and '80s, the idea of the machine became an counterculture sensation. But it wasn't until the mid-'80s, when David Woodard began fabricating Dreamachines, that it became a phenomenon. In this documentary film, John Aes-Nihil films Woodard and Burroughs together at LACMA in Los Angeles (1996, also featuring Allen Ginsberg and Leonardo DiCaprio), and the Nova Convention in Lawrence, Kansas (1996), and visits Burroughs in his Lawrence home (1997), recording the last known footage of the writer in a discourse on drugs and government policies.
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