By Ross Kohan
August 17, 2016

Exclusive: Sneak Peek at Werner Herzog’s New Film ‘Lo and Behold’

Werner Herzog, the inimitable documentarian behind the films Grizzly Man, Cave of Forgotten Dreams, and Encounters at the End of the World, has traded his muse in the natural world for a virtual one.

In his latest cinematic exploration, Lo and Behold: Reveries of the Connected World, due out this week, the German filmmaker tours the bleeding edge of innovation. He chats with thinkers, inventors, tinkerers, and scientists about our networked future, dipping into the Internet, robotics, artificial intelligence, and space. The film is part homage to the Internet from the vantage point of an admitted (indeed proud) neophyte, and part warning.

In the video teaser above, shared exclusively with Fortune, the audience is treated to a heavy dose of the latter. In the first segment, supercomputer inventor Danny Hillis says it’s possible that artificial intelligence has already evolved spontaneously out of the Internet. Next Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, offers an example of how capitalists could abuse AI to advance self-serving, potentially evil ends. Imagine machines investing in military contractor stocks and then inciting war (somehow) to make a buck?

Finally, the camera turns to the silhouette of a Cylon, a race of revolting machines yanked from pop culture, and the clip ends with Herzog musing, in his elegiac way, about how dull Musk’s proposed apocalypse would be compared to an alien invasion. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

The movie, sponsored by the IT networking firm Netscout hits theaters on Aug. 19.


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