In the 1950s, Vladimir Nabokov did not playfully claim that “reality” is a word that should only be put in quotation marks.

Contemporary technology has enabled thinkers to better understand the nature of the quotation marks. A Flaw in the Matrix directed by Rodney Ascher, who also directed Room 237, a 2013 film that provided a platform for certain Stanley Kubrick enthusiasts to theorize about “The Shining”. Many seemed to have too much time – exploring the idea that we all live in a computer simulation.

The starting point for this documentary is a lecture by the writer Philip K. Dick in France in the 1970s. Dick was a real artist and also lived with mental illness; His painful “revelations” about the nature of his reality move to be heard. Less rewarding are the confident cyber bromides offered by SpaceX billionaire CEO Elon Musk, who is stepping out of the dorm like a tech brother. The film also examines how this idea has manifested itself in popular culture, barely limited to the “Matrix” franchise.

But “A Glitch” just delves deep into the complex logic associated with this speculation. We have shown that Philosophy 101 supports Plato and Descartes as its pioneers. There are interview recordings with the contemporary philosopher Nick Bostrom, but nothing about his important ancestors WV Quine or Alfred North Whitehead.

These ideas have ramifications, and nowadays they are sometimes terrible. Throughout the film, Ascher told a man in a telephone interview who believed that the world depicted in “The Matrix” was real. This belief led him to kill his parents. The director processes the material in such a way that the end of the account is played as an exciting narrative “Revelation” if the viewer does not yet know who this person is. It’s exploitative and opportunistic. But not untypical for the film’s sophisticated sensory overload, which does not obscure its generally smooth approach.

A bug in the matrix
Not rated. Running time: 1 hour 48 minutes. To rent or buy in theaters and on Amazon, FandangoNow and other streaming platforms and pay-TV operators. Please read the Policies of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention before watching films in theaters.