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a Parallax Pictures news release

Philadelphia slated for World Premiere of new indie doc

"The Ad and the Ego"

local boys make good with controversial new film


Philadelphia: The Ad and the Ego, a locally produced documentary film, will celebrate its World Premiere in Philadelphia at International House on Thursday, September 26 at 7:30 p.m. Independent filmmakers Harold Boihem and Chris Emmanouilides will be present to discuss what critics are calling "the first comprehensive documentary on the cultural impact of advertising in America."

The Ad and the Ego traces advertising's development from its simple, descriptive 19th century origins through today's post-modern break with rationality. Intercutting thousands of contemporary and classic television commercials with insights by Stuart Ewen, Jean Kilbourne, Sut JhalIy and others, this film scrutinizes late 20th century American society and its prime inhabitant, Consumer Man.

The Ad and the Ego goes beyond deconstructing individual ads to help us understand how living in an advertising infused environment affects our perceptions of the world, of power, and above all, of ourselves. Advertising's constant stream of messages make up a neural network which connect us as a society, educating us about who we are and who we should be. In a world of diminishing resources and devastating pollution, advertising shamelessly promotes excessive consumer values that threaten the natural environment and impoverish our mental environments as well.

By utilizing the style, techniques and images of modern advertising, The Ad and the Ego challenges the viewer with subtle yet powerful manipulations of advertisingís intended messages. Complete with original soundtrack by media appropriation artists Negativland, this humorous and entertaining documentary presents a critical and insightful look at the destructive power of a mass media system out of control.

When asked about the controversy surrounding the unauthorized use of over three thousand TV commercials for his own personal gain, director Harold Boihem responded: "Donít you know copyright infringement is your best entertainment value? But seriously, everyone loves to hate advertising, we're just givin 'em what they want."

The Ad and the Ego is an irreverent, up to the minute analysis of the complex role advertising plays in our lives and its impact on our global future. Viewer discretion is advised: you will never look at an ad the same way again after experiencing The Ad and the Ego.

Additional screenings of The Ad and the Ego will be held on Friday September 27 at 1:00 and 7:30 p.m. at International House.

PRESS SCREENING: Thursday September 19 at 2:00 p.m. at International House.

3701 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104