The Perfect Human

A film called ‘The Perfect Human’ (1967) by Jorgen Leth is a short film which features a male and female inside a plain white room.

Repetition is one of the first things I noticed in the film, with the narrator repeating “There is the human” within the first minute as we see a male and then a female inside a blank white room. The repetition of the narrator is something that occurs frequently throughout the film, perhaps to emphasise the dialogue, or more likely (in my opinion) to suggest that there are alternate views in which the film wants you to think about. This point of looking at something simple and considering that same thing in a different way appears strongly at 7″ 30′ when the narrator asks “What is he thinking? Is the perfect human thinking of the room that he is in? The food he eats? Love? Happiness? Death?” All while the male character is simply sitting down at a dinner table in a completely blank room. I think this part of the film could be a statement about the complications involved in the life of a human. Asking ourselves questions, experiencing endless emotions, constant considerations, all things that no other species has to such an extent.

Another theme explored in the film is relationships. The simple setting, involving only one male and one female character seems to narrate on relationship at 5″ 47′ – “The room is no longer empty, there is a bed in the room”. To me, if the room represents the world as a blank canvas in which we make of it what we wish to, then the disappearance of the ’emptiness’ could symbolise the fulfilment of the perfect human finding love with another.

Regarding the theme power at 2″ 14′ the narrator says “the room is boundless and radiant with light” which is perhaps a representation of life, or more accurately – the earth. There are no boundaries and we fill the “empty room”(our earth/our life) with whatever we choose. We have the power to do anything we choose.

Obstruction 1

In this short film (a remake of The Perfect Human) there are clear obstructions that have been set and that can be seen throughout the film. The first one is clearly the editing because every two frames are skipped to make the image jolt and feel awkward. The next thing I noticed was that like The Perfect Human there is alot of repetition in the dialogue. It isn’t an obstruction as such, until it gets to the point of repeating shots continually.

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