Trouble in Mind : RESURRECT DEAD

Amusing, engrossing, and authentic, Jon Foy's Resurrect Dead is a documentary film that follows three intrepid fellows who try to track down the person (or persons) behind the infestation of hundreds of tiles embedded in the streets of a dozen American cities (as well as a handful in South America).  Said tiles contain an obtuse message that references Stanly Kubrick's 2001 A Space Odyssey as well as a peculiar theory of how to raise the dead from  British Historian, Arnold Toynbee.  Most of the tiles read:

" Toynbee Idea
In Movie 2001
Resurrect Dead
On Planet Jupiter" 

Lead by the charismatic, if somewhat eccentric, Justin Duerr, our makeshift Hardy Boys (Duerr, Colin Smith and Steve Weinik) scour the internet to come up with something - anything - that might help them discover the identity of the Tile Master.  One of the more disturbing pieces they come up with is a unique tile which refrains from the usual Toynbee message and instead reads like some sort of bizarre manifesto.  Indeed, the rantings reveal someone who might not only be suffering from paranoid delusions, but is also an Anti-Semite.  Be that as it may, eventually several names come up as well as an address that leads the trio to a row-home in South Philadelphia where the investigators engage several of the colorful locals as to the whereabouts and comings and goings of one particularly odd neighbor.  

Eventually, the guys come across several other fascinating leads including a brief mention in Clark DeLeon's column in The Philadelphia Inquirer as to who the Tile Master may be; a local who insists that his television once broadcast strange messages about the Toynbee theory; a one act play by David Mamet called Four A.M. (that may have been inspired by an actual phone call that the Tile Master made to a radio talk show) ; and  a possible theory as to how this guy manages to implant tiles onto busy streets (include one right outside the Holland Tunnel in New York City), with out being seen.

Ultimately, Resurrect the Dead is a story about the obsession with ideas that not only possess the troubled mind of one lonely man in South Philadelphia, but also how that obsession can transfer itself to those who want to know more about the man and what drove him to that obsession in the first place.


jennypower said...

Hey Pax, do these tiles still exist or have they all been removed?

Pax Romano said...

Jen, if memory serves, you can still see them...I am pretty sure there are several near Wanamakers and City Hall (13th street side).