Mind Control in the movie Labyrinth

Today is David Bowie’s 69th birthday.

I’m a massive fan.

Always have been. Always will be.

For my birthday last week, I bought myself the cult classic ‘Labyrinth’ DVD and watched it on New Year’s Day.

As a young girl in the 80s, watching it probably planted seminal seeds in my psyche and subliminally programmed a devastating attraction for dark horses – a.k.a dangerous men – and devil-dancing dalliances.

I mean what girl wasn’t initially afraid of, whilst at the same time captivated and intrigued by the androgynous Goblin King in tight spandex?

It’s David ‘Ziggy Stardust’ Bowie for crack’s sake!

The Faustian Deal

The premise of the movie is based on a petulant but enchanting young girl, Sarah, bored no wanting to babysit her brother Toby and wishes for him to be taken away. When her wish is granted by the Goblin King, Jareth – her handler – she finds herself embarking on a fantastical, but treacherous adventure via a labyrinth (Sarah’s pysche) – in a world where nothing is what it seems, where there are no rules and anything can happen.

In return, the Goblin King asks her for one thing:-

“Look what I’m offering you. I ask for so little. Just let me rule you, and you can have everything that you want. Just fear me, love me, do as I say, and I will be your slave.” 

Labyrinth is more than just a children’s fantasy adventure. The movie is laden with heavy symbolism and occult themes. Sarah’s predisposition to mind control programming is revealed in practically every scene. Through all the confusions, she must employ all her inner strength, wit and determination to overcome all the obstacles and rescue her brother – which is really her lost innocence and her training ground as she enters the world of mind control.

Her bedroom reveals the famous ‘Relativity’ drawing by Dutch artist, M.C. Escher, multiple staircases leading basically nowhere, depicting a world where normal laws of gravity do not apply, spatial cognition is askew and vision can play tricks on us. This is an important proponent in establishing the hidden, esoteric meaning central to the movie.

escher relativity

labyrinth sarahs room

“If [the child] has artistic brainwaves, then the programmer will use art work in programming. The art work of the european artist M.C. Escher is exceptionally well suited for programming purposes.

For instance, in his 1947 drawing “Another World”, the rear plane in the center serves as a wall in relation to the horizon, a floor in connection with the view through the top opening and a ceiling in regards to the view up towards the starry sky. Reversals, mirror images, illusion, and many other qualities appear in Escher’s art work which make all 76 or more of his major works excellent for programming.”

~ Fritz Springmeier: The Illuminati Formula to Create a Mind Control Slave

labyrinth relativity bowie

For those familiar with Jungian psychology, the labyrinth is one of the most powerful symbols of the subconscious.

“The maze of strange passages, chambers, and unlocked exits in the cellar recalls the old Egyptian representation of the underworld, which is a well-known symbol of the unconscious with its abilities.

It also shows how one is “open” to other influences in one’s unconscious shadow side and how uncanny and alien elements can break in.”

~ Carl Jung: Man and His Symbols

The All Seeing Eye

In the opening scene, Sarah is being watched by an owl perched on an obelisk as she performs a role, reciting some symbolic lines, as a princess. The owl is seen throughout the entire movie and is represented by her ‘monitoring’ by Jareth. The obelisk has also been known as the ultimate symbol of power for the occult elite, as well as a phallic symbol and hence, a reminder of her male handler pulling all the strings – classic mind control manipulation and persuasion.

Among the many obstacles Sarah must go through, the ordeals she faces have one common theme with mind control programming – instilling scenarios which activate trauma. In one scene, she falls into a pit where she is supposedly being held and grabbed by numerous hands – handlers (manipulation/abuse).

In another scene, she has to fight off strange singing creatures trying to take her head off – dismembering body parts is a classic disassociative tool used for mind control victims. She then finds herself forced to traverse the Bog of Eternal Stench, of nauseating odours and toxic fecal matter. Hardly appropriate for a children’s fantasy, you think? However, this is a prime mind control tool used for instilling trauma in MK slaves.

Let’s not forget the ‘Illuminati’ masquerade ball, where everyone is masked, except for Sarah. This scene is a classic rite of passage and a blueprint for indoctrination. Jareth awaits the ‘young princess’s coming of age’ like an initiation, full of suggestive looks and capricious intentions. Surreptitiously sexual, the scene of grown ups dancing all and chasing her hints at themes prominent in Kubrick’s ‘Eyes Wide Shut’. Sarah must muster all her inner reserves to break free from reality versus fantasy and remember her mission to save her brother.

Anyone else find an attraction to Jareth-like characters a little freakishly bizarre, yet intoxicating and appealing? I know I do and, so did Sarah, it seems. He never fails to appear at just the right moment to tease and taunt her.

labyrinth taunting

She finally arrives at the Castle, where she finds herself in Escher’s ‘relativity’ scene of multiple stair cases leading nowhere, where her brother Toby sits perched on one of the top rungs. Sarah must take a leap of faith, figuratively and literally, leaping off the staircase and out of the confusion.

She must then confront Jareth for the final time as he gives her a poetic love-bombing speech, enticing her to reconsider his offer. She begins to recite the lines she did at the beginning of the movie, which breaks the spell as her inner/fantasy world crumbles and she finds herself back in reality and in  her room:-

“Through dangers untold and hardships unnumbered, I have fought my way here to the castle beyond the Goblin City to take back the child you have stolen, for my will is as strong as yours and my kingdom, as great. You have no power over me.”

However, mind control enthusiasts will argue that her programming is now complete, as all the strange characters in her journey find their way back to her bedroom and in her real world – a convergence of reality and fantasy.

“I don’t know why, but… every now and again in my life, for no reason at all, I need you.”

While the analysis of Labyrinth can be interpreted in many ways – including its strong Jungian themes and Sarah’s own inner alchemical transformation from girl to young woman, due to its heavy symbolism – there are numerous references to mind control programming.

And if this seems too much of a stretch for some, then just sit back and enjoy the music of the ever enigmatic David Bowie. He is as bewitching and entrancing as ever. As my first onscreen muso crush, this androgynous darkling definitely got seeded deep into my psyche back in 1986 and paved way for my love of certain men… but that’s another blog for another time…

As much as a tragic retro freak that I am, I should get with the times and listen to his new album which just came out.

EDIT: (Jan 11, 2016)

I just found out that Bowie has just died – 2 days after releasing his latest album ‘Blackstar’ !!! Totally gutted. RIP divine star dust man. There will never be another like you. I leave you with two of my favourite musical scenes.