Back in early November, when we first heard the Cosmopolis theatrical release date of 12/12/12, the number hit a chord. Yes, it’s too far in the future and it’s hard to wait but it sure looks interesting. Visually.
The date, however, is now up for debate – a producer (we don’t know which one, no name was provided) told E!Online that is not the Cosmopolis release date. This contradicts the announcement at the Lisbon and Estoril Film Festival and the promotional image seen in Russia … so maybe so and maybe no. We’ll see when the official Cosmopolis site provides the info or there is some other such official announcement.
I kind of like the date 12.12.12 though. It also fits with the roll out schedule followed by A Dangerous Method – a long festival ramp up before general release. I suppose I could also live with the date Dec 21, 2012 and then we could have the band Rush score the film with a rendition of their song 2112. Get it? 21.12.2012.
In any event the year will be 2012 – and that’s cool. What can I say, I like the numbers.
I don’t think I’m the only one.
We had previously noticed the repeated use of the number 22 and talked about it here in the limo. By now, we know everything means something when it comes to Cosmopolis. So, let’s take the limo for a spin and figure out/speculate on the meaning of December 12th, 2012. As with all book discussion posts, spoiler warning.
Whether you believe in the fire and brimstone version of 2012 prophecies or simply think that it’s a portent of major change, the date has captured our attention. The Mayan calendar actually indicates the date December 21st, 2012 as the end of this, the “fourth” world.
Don’t sell the farm yet! There are more predictions, far, far into the future beyond 2012. For example, this date:
is 3 quintillian times the age of the universe. We’ve got loads of time.
However, I did notice some interesting connections between 2012 theories and those of Vija Kinski, Eric Packer’s Chief of Theory in Cosmopolis.
After decades of living immersed in the cycles and mathematics of Mayan calendrics, José came to clearly understand the distinction between this “natural time” as contrasted to our modern relationship to time which he called “mechanical time” or “artificial time.” This realization was formalized in 1989 when he made The Discovery of The Law of Time. According to The Law of Time, “modern humanity is out of harmony with our living biosphere because it is immersed in an erroneous and artificial perception of time which causes it to deviate at an accelerated rate from the natural order of the universe. To remedy this situation, Arguelles dedicated his life to promoting the return to a natural timing cycle…” In other words, the message is that humans are the only species that is out of phase with the harmony of the biosphere, and the root cause of this is our disconnection from Nature, which stems directly from our disconnection with natural time cycles…therefore we need to follow a nature-based calendar to shift back into alignment.
This sounded familiar. In Cosmopolis the concepts of time and money are almost interchangeable. Here is what Vija Kinski tells Eric.
“The future becomes insistent. This is why something will happen soon, maybe today,” she said, looking slyly into her hands. “To correct the acceleration of time. Bring nature back to normal, more or less.”
Here’s a theory that I can imagine Eric finding interesting. He tried to make it chart.
“Timewave zero” is a numerological formula that purports to calculate the ebb and flow of “novelty”, defined as increase over time in the universe’s interconnectedness, or organized complexity. According to Terence McKenna, the universe has a teleological attractor at the end of time that increases interconnectedness, eventually reaching a singularity of infinite complexity in 2012, at which point anything and everything imaginable will occur simultaneously.
“anything and everything will occur simultaneously”? Like a rapper’s funeral, a presidential motorcade, a global protest, a rave, an assassination attempt (by pie no less!)…
Cosmopolis was published in 2003 and is set in the near future. Could it be set in 2012? Is Eric a symbol of consumerism, ego and the end of world (as we know it)?
Perhaps the Mayan end of the world theory isn’t the joke it’s been turned into. Perhaps it was simply a demarcation in time showing when the beginning of change would start. Maybe it’s more of a transition; change is already happening. Recent market events, the near-collapse of the economies in Greece and Italy and the Occupy (Everywhere) movement. Bogus prophecy or not, the year 2012 seems to be a catalyst for change. A self-fulfilling prophecy?
Could De Lillo have been nodding at these prophecies? David Cronenberg seems to be embracing the date. Eric himself leaves a huge clue near the beginning of Cosmopolis:
“When he died he would not end.
The world would end.”
Cosmopolis by Don DeLillo
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