Filmmaker Avi Weider was interested in the role of technology in our society and the even greater role it will play in our future. While working on the film, Weider and his wife were trying to conceive a child. However, they were unable to do so through traditional means.
After a few visits to an In Vitro clinic, they learned they were about to become parents to triplets. After a difficult birth, the children were kept in the hospital for months in order to keep them alive. The title is in reference to these newborns, welcoming them to the machine, without which they would not be able to survive. The idea of human's dependence on technology is what frames the film.
Weider includes interview subjects from all sides of the spectrum. On one extreme is Ray Kurzweil, who is perhaps the most optimistic person about the future role of technology. He believes that in the next twenty to thirty years we will have developed the ability to (one way or another) live forever. (Editor's note: Kurzweil is, in fact, the subject of another fascinating documentary, Transcendent Man). The opposite end of the spectrum features Ted Kaczynski (aka the Unabomber) who is not interviewed in person but rather through a serious of hand written letters and an intermediary. While Kurzweil puts total faith in technology, Kaczynski thinks technology is the worst thing to ever happen to humankind and we should revert back to a hunter gatherer society. The film avoids falling into the trap of being either too apocalyptic or fantastical due to the inclusion of these alternate points of view, as well as others who fall along various points of this spectrum.
Weider is obviously a very skilled filmmaker and he was able to reign in a variety opinions and topics and place them along a singular narrative. The personal angle involving his children also adds an emotional element that off sets the cold techno speak from many of interview subjects. The children also provide the basis for the conclusion that with every generation we will be more comfortable and integrated with technology. Whether this is a good thing or not is left up to the viewer.
Written by Jason Poynton
Jason works on his feet all day, so when he gets some downtime his greatest joy is to settle in at a movie theatre and see a couple movies back-to-back, or in the the case of film festival season race around the city and see four or five in a day. Of course after the movies it’s time to eat and drink and talk it out with some friends.