The Substance - Albert Hofmann's LSD 0+

Martin Witz, CH 2011, English version / Czech subtitles, 89 min

In 1943 Professor Albert Hofmann discovered a substance that could completely overturn the user‘s perception of the world. He immediately realized its potential as a means to detect the functioning of the human mind. Its use as a weapon was investigated by the CIA and military forces. LSD, however, soon escaped from the laboratories and in the 60s became a part and a mover of American history. The drug began to live its own wild life. Timothy Leary believed that mass use of LSD enabled the spiritual revival of American consumer society. Therefore it became especially popular in the hippie community, which led to a new system of values and strong protests against the war in Vietnam. Due to the number of negative responses LSD was, for a long period, on the list of banned substances. In 2007 the Swiss government allowed the use of LSD in experimental treatments. Thus the controversial substance helps dying patients to cope with the proximity of death by virtue of a spiritual experience. The documentary is full of rare historical footage, interviews and impressive eff ects, which help to bring the audience closer to the perceptions of LSD users. The fascinating story that explores the problematic relation between mankind and lysergic acid is commented on by the “father” of LSD, Albert Hofmann.

The screening is in partnership with the Academia Film Olomouc - international festival of science documentary film.

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