“It’s rather brilliant.” –The Washington Post
“A tongue-in-cheek manifesto for the technology-addicted generation.” –NPR Science Friday
“Very cool film.” –The New York Times
Featured on Katie Couric on CBS News
Yelp premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and has played around the world at festivals including The Black Maria Film Festival and The Hamburg International Short Film Festival. It has been included in The Journal of Short Films Volume 26, received awards including the award of excellence from the Best Shorts Competition and Best Performance from the Maverick Movie Awards.
In a tribute to Allen Ginsberg’s classic 1956 poem, Yelp: With Apologies to Allen Ginsberg’s “Howl” is a 3-min film lampooning the addictions of our generation.
Sophocles once said, ‘nothing vast enters the life of mortals without a curse,’ and this couldn’t be more true of technology. My team and I were hard at work on our feature documentary film, Connected: An Autoblogography about Love, Death & Technology. We were writing, texting, tweeting, emailing, talking, deciding, cutting, and pasting, when we heard that an organization was doing a National Day of Unplugging. They asked us to try to unplug for a day. Immediately it was clear: “We must partake!”
I was really feeling like I needed to take one day of the week off from technology. Recently addicted to Twitter, I became the kind of person I hated—the one pulling out her iPhone while actually talking to someone, sneaking email fixes in bathroom stalls. It was getting ugly. Clearly, I needed a technology Shabbat. My whole family did.
My husband and I decided to rework one of our favorite poems by Ginsberg—we have a Howl book cover framed and signed in our kitchen. And so Yelp came to be. We had a blast writing it. Then I gathered my team, my wonderful co-editor Dalan McNabola, and I created the short film from images we had culled for our feature doc and original animations by the visual magician Stefan Nadelman. And then Peter Coyote lent us his amazing voice and the film came to life.
Since we made this film, my family and I have unplugged from technology 1 day a week. We’re now on the 5th year of doing it and it has changed our lives. You can read more about it here.
Written by Tiffany Shlain & Ken Goldberg
Directed by Tiffany Shlain
Edited by Tiffany Shlain & Dalan Mcnabola
Original Animations by Stefan Nadelman
Narrated by Peter Coyote
Produced by Carlton Evans
Filmmaker Tiffany Shlain speaks around the world at a wide range of events.
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