What will the future of our civilization and the human species look like? It’s a question pop culture frequently asks. Especially when the possible answer encompasses the way we conceive of collective identity. In fact, dystopian and utopian movies are the order of the day. Will there be great technical advances? An unknown physical and intellectual evolution? A conquest of space at levels that we cannot imagine right now?
The cinema provides, perhaps, the most amazing answers to these questions. It does so from the point of view of speculation, reflection and exploration of scenarios that would otherwise be impossible to build. From a world in which artificial intelligence is capable of acting with subversive independence, to amazing interplanetary travel. For the cinematographic world, the future is made up of stories and images that defy any concept of reality. They resize it and go through it from new perspectives, each time wider and more amazing.
But they don’t always do it through hope. Dystopian films, that dark and disturbing reverse of utopia, are also frequent in cinematographic science fiction. Being able, in addition, to offer the most sinister perspectives on the evolution of the human race and its environment centuries away. Can the worst of our culture and society become a danger to the survival of the species? Even more complicated, can what we expect of a future unthinkable become a terrifying vision?
we leave you five dystopian Netflix movies that try to explore those reflections. And they do it, moreover, from completely different points of view and from dark extremes. A disturbing look at good, evil and what awaits us, perhaps in possibilities still unthinkable for anyone. A review of the twisted image of what reality could be.
The quintessential dystopian Netflix movie: blade runner 2049
blade runner 2049 analyzes the future from despair. In this dystopian Netflix movie, technology is everywhere, but so is the certainty that human life is uninspiring. A theme that already the iconic bladerunner addressed and that ended up turning its main premise into a paradox. Is artificial intelligence an answer to all man’s questions about his ability to create? If so, why is there a confrontation between androids and humans?
For director Denis Villeneuve, what really matters is the fact of deciphering the nature of the relationship between man and machine. What are we? It is the question that is repeated over and over again. He does it in the appearance of the replicants, neat and indistinguishable from the human. The way in which society contemplates and assimilates them with difficulty, but never accepts them.
For the occasion, Villeneuve builds, in this dystopian feature film, a harsh background that surrounds the replicants after the rebellion. He achieves it through a measured and methodical subtlety, which is almost melancholy. The “K” of him (Ryan Gosling) observes the world from an uncertain distance. The character lacks an identity and performs his job as a policeman as a practical duty. There are no ethical sentiments. For the manager, the argument is a journey through the pains of a society that collapses aimlessly.
Which makes the movie more complex than it seems. Androids are built—and thrive—as a reflection of the human and nothing more than that. A double look at humanity that is distorted, collapses and, in the end, ends up being a desolate landscape. But human desolation is barely shown and glimpsed through his works and creations.
Considered slow, pretentious, and yet a visual gem with subtle context, this dystopian Netflix film is still searching for its place in pop culture. For now, it remains, like its iconic predecessor, a gem worth pondering.
In a world where conceiving a baby is a dangerous crime, being a large family is a risk no one wants to take. In the year 2043, world population is already a crucial debate. It overwhelms the most pessimistic calculations and has become an unprecedented crisis that devastates cities and natural territories alike. This dystopian Netflix film from Tommy Wirkola delves into an ingrained collective fear that, in the plot, takes the form of an all-out cataclysm. One that also impacts the perception of the human race as the center of the history of culture and the future.
What if the only chance of salvation was to restrict births? Not in a subtle way, but to create a cruel and directly violent system to achieve it. the dystopian movie What happened to Monday? takes the precedent of current laws on the restriction of reproductive capacity and takes it to a terrifying dimension. Also, reimagines the future as a totalitarian system in which the human being is the victim of his own pains and horrors.
The Subsidiary Assignment Law dictates the number of births. But, even worse, he subdues with refined cruelty those he punishes. It is not just about defining how many babies can be born to maintain a sustainable number of the world’s population. The severe and violent legal framework also dictates the future of those who transgress its limits. In the future, being born is a crime as serious as killing.
The premise extends through the lives of seven identical sisters, born in secret and who have managed to keep their existence hidden for decades. However, little by little, they will all have to face a repressive and dehumanizing system. This dystopian Netflix film turns the fight for survival into a confrontation against authoritarianism and individual destruction. Further, it is a dark reflection on power, time and horrors on the edge of a future as shocking as it is close.
The Purge: The Night of the Beasts
Dystopia can also encompass fearful regions about power relations that could spark possible events. When an economic crisis shatters America’s legal, financial, and political system, a new system emerges with the promise of peace. Is about a future dictator who has total control over the lives of citizens.
This dystopian Netflix movie tackles the primal instinct for revenge. The Purge: The Night of the Beasts explores the possibility of total impunity for crime under certain conditions. Ones that explore the primitive notion of retaliation and violent gratification. It is a terrifying version of justice that is assumed personally and unilaterally. Once a year, the ruling totalitarian system allows all citizens to commit any crime. From the bloodiest to the most depraved. Everything is allowed as a way to provide an open door in the midst of repression.
The film – the first of a saga of five – shows the once most powerful country in the world turned into a brutal structure. Also, in a terrifying dystopia in which the dehumanization of the individual leads him to become a victim or a murderer once a year. Little by little, this dystopian feature film, which you can watch on Netflix, meditates on the nature of violence, finally reaching a disturbing conclusion. What would an ordinary citizen do if the law did not limit his actions? A question that the film does not answer — not directly — but that it does mix with the conviction of a wild look at debauchery and cruelty.
Wealth and poverty have always been subjects of an uncomfortable debate about privilege. This dystopian feature film from Neill Blomkamp takes it to a whole new dimension by imagining that the boundary between opulence and misery is geographical. What if the dispossessed inherit a world shattered by climatic disasters and the complete breakdown of all political systems? A chaotic territory, destined for destruction and all kinds of horrors on the prowl?
Although the premise of the film goes much further. What would be the consequence if the wealthiest and wealthiest had the opportunity to leave a planet in decline? Create a world with its own atmosphere, secluded from all deprivation and overflowing with luxury? One in which, in addition, the most serious diseases can be cured? What would be the perception of those who struggle to survive on the planet they come from?
In this dystopian Netflix film, both realities collide, and the plot encompasses more complex elements than might be expected from the action and science fiction genres. From the conception of economic hardship, to the desperation for survival or the indifference of privileges. The feature film goes through unusual places for a script of its nature and uses dystopia to confront distressing issues. Is the future marked by money, the possibility of economic access and the disappearance of all empathy and solidarity? Elysiumwith its harsh and fearsome tone, is linked with a urgent message of reflection on the nature of today’s culture. Much more, with its darkest and most painful points.
Netflix’s Dystopian Movie Reveal: The hole
The first thing that surprises in Galder Gaztelu-Urrutiaes’s film is the absence of temporal or spatial references to what it shows. This is most likely a prison, but it could also be an insane asylum. Even something much more twisted, like a place of transit or trial where the tenants —or inmates— display their abilities.
The hostile environment suggests the idea that what the director shows us is something more than an allegory to the unexplored spaces of the human mind.. The dystopian feature film is much more complex than that and makes it clear from the very first sequence. In it, food is shown as the great treasure that during a good part of the plot will be disputed with unusual cruelty. But, also, it will be the measure of the ambitions of a film obsessed with greed.
Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia rightly reflects on his fragility in inexplicable and unbearable conditions. The argument does not lavish in explanations. The bits of information shown are not clear enough to define what is the danger that threatens the characters. While one of them admits that he is inside the enclosure of his own free will, the other confesses that he does it to purge a crime as improbable as it is ridiculous. So the premise seems to reflect on the fact of horror as the last point in the rupture of the individual.
With its air of dark dystopian film about inexplicable methods of control, The hole it’s a claustrophobic fantasy. Also, a fearsome insight into what the darkness of human nature can hide. Everything, in the worst conditions imaginable. In the midst of a twisted perception about what anyone would be capable of doing in extreme conditions. Perhaps, the greatest achievement of this dystopian Netflix movie.