Sunday, August 29, 2010

Historical Dystopia

I have been interested in the genre of dystopian movies and novels of late. The genre really is an interesting one. I am not sure who first thought it would be a good idea to tell "hell on Earth" stories. And, I am still trying to figure out what and why they are written. As far as novels go, the most famous books with a dystopian theme include H.G. Wells "War of the Worlds", George Orwell "1984", Ayn Rand, "Atlas Shrugged" and Aldous Huxley "A Brave New World". As far as movies go, there are too many to name. Some more notable dystopian titles include, "Mad Max", "Waterworld", "District 9", "Gattaca", "Judge Dredd", "Demolition Man", "Omega Man", "Soylent Green", "Minority Report", "The Matrix", "The Day After", 'Book of Eli", "Children of Men", "I Robot", "The Road", etc. TV series include "Jericho", and the Discovery Channel's new "The Colony."

Some people speculate that the purpose of these movies is to 1) explore and measure human fear in response to various potential threats. 2) use that fear to create a dependence on a strong federal government 3) predictive programing which will dictate what people will do and how they will act in social crisis.

There are several kinds or categories of dystopian themes. One involves the depiction of a government and society distopia. Another involves a corporate-controlled dystopia. Third is an alien-controlled reality. And Fourth would be post-apocalyptic. Wiki leave out another category which I would describe as historical dystopian. Movies like this would include "Wyatt Earp" and "Apocalypto"'.

Wyatt Earp
I consider this a totally dystopian movie. First, I find it interesting that Dodge City and Tombstone, AZ supposedly had city gun bans. While this may be a disputed, what I find interesting is that the gun bans didn't seem to help much. On the contrary, I think the other small towns in the West must have been very boring places to live in because the bad guys kept away knowing everyone was packing heat. It seems to me that the fabled gun ban in Tombstone would have empowered and emboldened the bad guys. And the existence of bad guys means job security for the Earp brothers. If you are the street sweeper, you need people to litter.

Apocalypse Now
The whole theme of this book is that without the constraints of law, it is human nature to eventually become uncivilized and savage. While I believe there is some truth to this, I don't think it justifies tyranny. The Book of Mormon teaches that a people can retain their civilization by having a spiritual anchor. Unlike the Mulekites, the Nephites brought their scriptures with them. The scriptures served to preserve their language, spiritual, legal, social, and cultural identity even as they wandered as pilgrims or sojourners in a strange land.

Children of Men
While this movie is set in England, It is obvious that it is meant to depict the US. FEMA camps are labeled "Homeland Security". The people are mysteriously unable to reproduce. The Report from Iron Mountain describes a plan to put elements in food, water, and vaccines to sterilize the masses and only allow reproduction under strict permission and eugenic control. It is also interesting how the movie speaks of a Flu Pandemic in 2008, as well as claiming the government was staging "false-flag" bombing to scare the people and blame the rebels. The youngest person in the movie was born in 2009. That means social collapse must have occurred not long afterwards.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Cult dystopia "FAQ" is now available in a Special Collector's Edition DVD!!!