For my paper and presentation, I picked the film Idiocrasy. While watching the movie, I saw some interesting things about the future depicted in the film that aren’t exactly consistent. If you haven’t watched the movie before, or you want to wait to know any of my thoughts of the movie until my actual presentation, do not continue reading. This is my spoiler alert.
Getting that out of the way, one of the first plot points of the film that made no sense to me was the way in which the government is being handled in the future. Idiocrasy is about what would happen if only stupid people continued to breed, and how bad the future would be if stupid people ruled the world. The President of the United States is some muscular guy in a red, white, and blue jumpsuit that kind of reminds me of something out of the fourth Rocky. Everyone else working for the government is a complete imbecile. But, there is still a requirement that everyone get a tattoo on their arm, and there are scanners almost everywhere than can identify who you are. At one point, Luke Wilson’s character is on the run from jail for a misunderstood crime, and the scanner not only identifies who Wilson is, but the car is electronically shut off so the police can catch up with them. There is also a mist that shoots out of fast food intercoms to pacify people who are upset. All of this sounds disturbingly like an extreme big brother government. But, who exactly is the face of this “big brother?” Who has the intelligence to manufacture a mist to pacify people or a scanner that can identify you by a tattoo or even come up with the idea to brand people with tattoos? Not to mention the creepy Holocaust similarity with the tattoo identification. However, these people have probably never even heard of the Holocaust because libraries are probably as run down as the poorly equipped hospitals.
There is also a more humorous inconsistency in the film about the growth of plants. In the future, a Gatorade-like company has completely monopolized the beverage industry. It’s so extreme that this sports drink is in all of the water fountains and is the sole food group on the food pyramid (this movie came out before the new diagram came out with the guy walking up the steps). The only use for water is to put it into toilets. The people even use the sports drink to water their plants, and because of this, nothing is growing. First of all, I can’t understand what people would eat if literally no crop is growing. But, this is a parody and I can let it slide. What I can’t overlook, my second point, is that in the film, there are several people smoking cigarettes and weed. There are also commercials on T.V. for cigarettes. Both cigarettes and tobacco come from plants. They need water to grow. It’s a small detail, but I thought it was a pretty funny inconsistency.