Made for German television, this recently rediscovered, three-and-a-half-hour labyrinth is a textbook example of a film many years ahead of its time. An adaptation of Daniel F. Galouye’s 1964 American novel Simulacron-3, World on a Wire is a paranoid, boundlessly inventive take on the future with dashes of Stanley Kubrick, Kurt Vonnegut, and Philip K. Dick. Made less than a decade after Alphaville (1965) and a quarter-century before The Matrix (1999), this satiric and surreal look at the world of tomorrow is a noir-spiked tale about a cybernetics engineer (Klaus Löwitsch) who uncovers a massive corporate conspiracy. As Fassbinder himself described it, World on a Wire is “a very beautiful story that depicts a world where one is able to make projections of people using a computer. Perhaps another, larger world has made us as a virtual one? In this sense it deals with the old philosophical model, which here takes on a certain horror.”