Ben Franklin Blowing Bubbles at a Sword

Posted January 21, 2012 in
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Press photo from Ben Franklin Blowing Bubbles At A Sword
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Normal.dotm 0 0 1 151 866 Salt Lake Community College 7 1 1063 12.0 0 false 18 pt 18 pt 0 0 false false false Ben Franklin Blowing Bubbles at a Sword
Slamdance Film Festival
Director: Jonathan Napolitano

In his “first screening, ever, first short film, ever,” Jonathan Napolitano documents three “mental athletes” as they train for and compete in the 2011 USA Memory Championships. These mental athletes basically see who can memorize more things, from matching 99 names to 99 faces, memorizing pages full of random numbers and recalling the order of a shuffled deck of playing cards, all within strict time constraints. The subject may seem dry, but the methods these master memorizers use to remember particular numbers or playing cards bring to mind the film Inception—2011 champion Nelson Dellis commits playing card sequences to memory by associating them with childhood memories and images of friends strung together in elaborate scenarios. Napolitano succeeds in showing how these mental athletes—using methods anyone can learn—do what they do. For some like Dellis, flexing their memory has deep meaning: “You get to keep those memories for life … That’s what life’s about.”

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Press photo from Ben Franklin Blowing Bubbles At A Sword