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Barcode.tv

A cinematic story machine that tells you who you are, based on the material possessions you hold dear.

A fortune teller predicts the future based on the lines on people’s hands. The hand conjures up the story, as it were. The cinematic story machine Barcode, a collaboration between Arte and the National Film Board of Canada, works in a similar way.

Insert a word and a one-minute-long film pops out. The word should describe an object that you hold dear, because “objects are like mirrors.” That is the intention behind the 100 short films in the database: to have our possessions look at us for a change, and show us who we are in the process. Type in “google” and you end up on a market for second-hand wares, where a salesman tries to pawn off his erotic videos and Jackie Chan films: you are a stuffy collector. Scan the barcode on your iPad and attractive people will softly whisper “singular, plural, female, male”: a walking encyclopedia. Desperados, the Mexican beer, and Starbucks give the same result: a tough guy sitting on a skyscraper swings his lasso, to which a can is attached: the independent drinker. The associations are funny, surprising, mind-blowing, or simply absurd. They all make us think of our personal belongings in a new way, and with that also the image we thought we had of ourselves.

Project details

Year of development :2010-11
Created by:ONF/ARTE
Full project credits

Available formats

Official website

http://codebarre.tv/en/#/en