A Glitch in the Matrix

USA 2021, 108 mins
Director: Rodney Ascher

+ intro and discussion

Simulation theory, or the concept that reality is in fact an artificial simulation, is central to Rodney Ascher’s head-spinning foray into virtual worlds. Utilising a blend of archive footage and interviews with internet theorists, A Glitch in the Matrix sends viewers tumbling down the rabbit hole in exploring the outermost frontiers of human perception.

This short series is curated by Benjamin Brown and presented in partnership with Citizen Autistic – The London Autism Film Club.

Director: Rodney Ascher

Nick Bostrom
Philip K. Dick
Joshua Cooke

USA 2021
108 mins


‘The eye sees only what the mind is prepared to comprehend.’ –Henri Bergson

The yawning Grand Canyon, chasms between perception versus reality, the complex, fluid nature of gender and identity and the Siren-like seductiveness of modern technology are among the themes and topics explored in this two-film pairing running in May and June.

From the mind-bending concept of ‘Simulation Theory’, the notion that reality is just a product of astronomically advanced computer programmes probed in the documentary A Glitch in the Matrix, to the alien gaze of Scarlett Johansson’s curious cosmic interloper in the sensual sci-fi Under the Skin, these films each present divergent viewpoints and ways of thinking.

In today’s hyper-connected world of runaway artificial intelligence and immersive, utterly convincing virtual realms, the series also begs viewers to ponder one key question: what does it mean to be human anyway?

After each screening join us for a relaxed discussion as we explore some of these themes. Benjamin Brown will host the discussion. This month it will be in the BFI Reuben Library.

We welcome your feedback on this screening.

BFI Southbank has been awarded the National Autistic Society’s Autism Friendly Award.

The next relaxed screening is:
UNDER THE SKIN + discussion
Monday 26 June 2023 18.15 NFT3

Find out more at and

Relaxed Screenings

Relaxed screenings are presented each month for
those in the neurodiverse community, their assistants and carers.

• Customers can select their seats when they arrive in the auditorium. You may sit with your family/friendship group or there are some single seats if you prefer.

• Please leave space between yourself and other groups and retain your selected seats for the duration of the performance if possible.

• We encourage you to wear a face covering if you are able to.

• You are welcome to take refreshments into the auditorium but no hot food please.

• Doors will open 30 minutes before the screening.

• No trailers will be shown.

• The programme will be introduced.

• Our house lights will remain on a low level throughout the screening, and the volume will be turned slightly down.

• You will be able to leave the auditorium and return during the screening.

• There will be a quiet space to use if you need to leave the auditorium.

• We understand you may make some noise.

• Please ask us if you need help.