Why do we dream? Why are we unable to recall significant details from our past? Why do we have panic attacks? How is our brain affected by hallucinogens? Does meditation change the way our brain works?
Netflix’s The Mind, Explained delves into these interesting questions and more, breaking it down to engaging, easy-to-understand content using studies, archival footage, infographics and cartoons, among other tools.
The five-episode limited series gives us a peek into the complexities of how our brain works. Narrated by actor Emma Stone, the documentary series dives into a certain aspect of our brain or how a particular condition affects it. Each episode is 20 minutes long, and honestly not enough to learn about each of these fascinating topics. There is so much information packed into an episode, it leaves you wanting to know more about the complex machine that is our brain.
The first episode ‘Memory’ uses the 9/11 tragedy as a tool to look at how our memory works, and how some of the most significant memories can be warped over time and even become unreliable. ‘Dreams’ shows how our brain makes bizarre connections when we are asleep, the concept of lucid dreaming and also footage of artist Salvador Dali exclaiming that he dreams in “glorious Technicolor”. In ‘Anxiety’, we learn more about the most common mental illness and how the right amount of anxiety is important for our survival. The practice of watching yourself breathe and meditate to improve attention and focus forms the crux of ‘Mindfulness’ while ‘Psychedelics’ looks at the use of psychedelic drugs and its dramatic effect on our brain.
The series nicely ties together case studies, interviews and data in neat little packages, much like how the brain connects things together. The Mind, Explained is an absorbing and entertaining watch.
THE MIND, EXPLAINED
Available on Neflix