"Everything is nothing but illusion and illusion is a true happiness in life."
- André Mailfert, one of the great antique furniture fakers c. 1935.
"Subjective Face" a kind
of Rorschach by
Mark A. Raimer, 1997.
One of my favorite pieces of cinematic "guerrilla ontology" comes from a London businessman with diverse interests in the entertainment industry named Ray Santilli. This silent black and white film which Santilli claims to have purchased from a retired military photographer seems the most provocative ontological oddity caught in greyscale. As one story goes, while Santilli had searched for vintage Elvis Presley concert footage, he met an elderly man who sold him some film and asked if he would like to see some really interesting stock. Always on the prowl for more marketable material, Santilli agreed to buy a mysterious stack of canisters from the man who told him they came from his military days in the late 1940s.
On May 5th, 1995 Santilli presented this footage to the public for the first time with an invited audience of media representatives and researchers at the London Museum: the theater darkens, the black and white film rolls, and we see some men in concealing contamination-garb begin to perform an autopsy on a humanoid creature which lays inanimate on an operating table.
People have now come to know this footage as "the alien autopsy", due mostly to the FOX television show "Alien Autopsy: Fact or Fiction" hosted by Jonathan Frakes (Commander William Riker on Star Trek: the Next Generation). Although Frakes makes no fact or fiction determinations concerning the Santilli footage, many people believe this film shows the autopsy of a dead extraterrestrial crew member from a crashed flying saucer near Roswell, New Mexico, in 1947.
In "Alien Autopsy" you can find a number of snippet interviews with everyone from renowned pathologists to Hollywood special effects and make-up artists. It goes without saying that everyone has a different angle on this piece of alien snuff. Some people think the film documents an autopsy on a real extraterrestrial biological entity (although we have no conclusive evidence of this). Others say it shows no more than an elaborate mannequin getting sliced and diced in true "snuff" fashion (although all attempts to date have failed to match the realism seen in the film). Some say the footage shows a polydactyl human cadaver with Down syndrome or some other genetic disorder (also another unproved assertion so far, which one doctor recently postulated in a European medical text). But when you put aside the cut and paste sequencing and interviews of the made for TV "expose", all the bickering back and forth between the battle camps of dogmata, and just watch the original uncut greyscale version of the film, I think you will agree that it definitely deserves at least a look.
I won't bother venturing my own guesses as to the ontology of this "evidence" here. Some wave their hands in the air claiming "hard evidence" of extraterrestrial life, while others scream "fraud". I say, just rent a copy of the unedited version, sit down with a smirk, and watch.
Let me know if you too can see the quintessential sequence as I did after the skull gets sawed open. Just as the brain gets removed from the subject, the alien head begins bouncing up and down like a silicon ball on the hard metal operating table. The masked assistant to the surgeon quickly steadies the knocking noggin and they continue with their procedures. If you see all this, as I have, you must then ask yourself the quintessential question "what if aliens are made of silicon?"