Future promises and possibilities have always been an interesting subject for human kind. For filmmakers and fiction authors, concept of future human society and technology engendered creative portrayals which gives us the opportunity to explore extraordinary territories on and outside the Earth. Earlier, technology in movies seemed unreal. But with advanced movie making special effects tool, it is no longer bizarre to portray futuristic vision of tomorrow’s society with detailed visuals.
Many movies touch the theme of dangers of using new technology and question the difference between human and tech-based applications. Some of them are pure fantasies or criticize human greed and its severe consequences. But the best ones powerfully mirror our society by taking us into its future version. This is the best time to take a walk into history of top 15 brilliant movies that explore real-world technologies, directly or indirectly. Here is the list:
This film is believed to be the first ever classic on technology that explores the difference between classes set in dystopian future. The futuristic concept of Metropolis depicts the expanding gap that materializes between the rich and the poor as cities become overly civilized. Directed by Fritz Lang, the film portrays the unpleasant impact of selfish industrialization on different grades of people and portrays a product of futuristic technology, instigates chaos etc.
Having distinction of being regarded as the remarkable sci-fi film, Prometheus unfolds from the mind of Ridley Scott who also directed the old classic Alien. The story jumps forward to 2093 when Weyland industries, using technologies of Google, Apple and Space X, harnesses a team of humans to fulfil the mission of finding the creator of humanity. The intriguing attractions here from the technological viewpoint are:
- Eighth generation humanoid android
- Remotely controlled surgical robots
- Automated medical procedure Pod
Emerging from the intelligent mind of Christopher Nolan, Inception cleverly plays with state of illusion and reality, creating an effect where both seem to blend into each other. The brilliant movie lives on the concept of vivid dreams that looks so real with the help of incredible special effects used by Nolan.
A dream within a dream – the kind of concept that goes overhead yet amazes viewers with its newness. With such technology, it becomes possible to deceive someone to the extent where they sometimes need a reminder to believe that events are real and not a dream.
The film basically was a love story starring Kate Winslet and Jim Carry. To forget their past moments of romance, lovers Joel and Clementine resort to Lacuna Inc to erase their memories after the break-up. In reality, such technology is tested on mice which resulted in the discovery of the memory-erasing gene. This breakthrough will benefit patients coping with post-traumatic disorder. The best part of the movie is its cinematic visuals on formation, deterioration and storage of memories was helpful for neuroscience.
5. Her (2013)
In Her, technology remains epic and significant, playing a vital yet unobtrusive role in Theodore’s life, creating a new technologically unruffled vision of the future. The lead character leverages keyboard-free version of life where everything is driven by voice-enabled services- powered by Artificial Intelligence.
Quiet and helpful, Samantha as a technology is still considered as a project in concept as it does not promise to come to reality as yet unlike Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Google Now.
It is a thought-provoking, haunting portrayal of the situation of Earth in 2805. Here humans have evacuated the planet and WALL-E cleans up their mess and interacts with a probe visitor robot EVE. The movie takes a critical look at the consequences of consumerism, poor waste management and extreme pollution, showing a horrible stack of garbage on Earth that makes our eyes pop out.
Full of unforeseen gadgets and awe-inspiring weapons, Iron Man is another film based on futuristic technology that fascinated the audience in 2008. Robert Downey Jr plays Tony Stark who is a billionaire playboy, the engineer and the industrialist. Tony Stark’s laboratory is packed with marvellous gadgets built with unbelievable technology, Iron Man suit and gesture-based computer for designing his exoskeleton suit.
Rick Deckard played by Harrison Ford is a Blade Runner of the title who tracks down human clones and replicas who have gone out of their way of their assigned missions. It is Los Angeles 2019 where flying cars is a common sight to behold. Imbued with Asian influence, Blade Runner creates a sci-fi world that fits close to reality. The movie gives a message of warning that humans need to be wary of such technology that has ability to reproduce us.
In this 1984 futuristic thriller action, Arnold Schwarzenegger played an iconic robotic cyborg assassin referred as The Terminator. It encompassed several elements such as human-faced machines, time travel phenomenon and the rise of the machines (prelude to Matrix, perhaps). A legendary movie of its time, the story has Arnold as a machine (The Terminator) with a face of human, pursuing Kyle Reese who is going back in time to chase a woman named Sarah Connor.
The film’s concept of AI-enabled machines has come true though it still lacks ability to think and take actions like a human brain.
10. The Net (1995)
Based on real-time possibilities of cyber threats, The Net explores the sudden hazardous troubles of Angela Bennett (played by Sandra Bullock) who is professionally a computer-savvy analyst. This theme sounds too real if thought from today’s technological world where data security is under a constant fear of being violated.
Creating a much frisson and stimulation among pop culture, The Matrix was the first of the three part trilogy about an uncanny alternate reality that exists beneath us. Focused on Wachowski brothers, The Matrix emphatically suggests that what we experience and perceive is just an illusion, a virtual computer simulation controlled by sentient machines that took over the human race.
The film conveyed the unique ideas of artificial reality, Wall running and Bullet time. Wildly imaginative and highly intricate, the movie influenced an array of video games, novels and similar themes of movies.
Set in 2050’s, Minority Report exhibits technology that supports precrime analysis to stop horrible crimes before they actually happen. Tom Cruise, hot favourite actor, plays precrime chief John Anderson, who gets close to the clues through transparent, screenless, gesture-operated holographic 3D computer technology. We can sense today’s Virtual and Augmented reality and the imaginative vision of technologically bleak that can happen in 2054.
13. Gravity (2013)
Gravity shows the possibilities of undesirable catastrophe in space and what to do when disaster strikes out of nowhere in a place where only pure human adroitness and experience can get you out of misery. Dr. Ryan Stone played by Sandra Bullock is a biomedical engineer who is stuck in space with her team mates fighting the crisis imposed by vandal Russian manoeuvres.
14. Avatar (2009)
The legendary director James Cameron’s Avatar was a massive success as it thrilled the audience whisking them away into an entirely different world. The story explores the unforeseen planet Pandora, where native inhabitants are called Na’vi, blue-skinned, 10-feet-tall creatures with a tail.
One can instantly feel impressed by Cameron’s use of high tech gadgets, helicopters, spectacular graphic visuals, and flying dragons of the Na’vi resisting the gunships of humans. Though we see the juggling and friction between traditionalism and imperialism, you can adore the world of Pandora and their people’s unusual rituals and notions.
15. WarGames (1983)
In this movie, David Lightman played by Mathew Broderick accidentally triggers an untoward calamity. Previously a hacker, David gains access to WOPR (War Operation Plan Response), a supercomputer for war simulation, which leads to dangerous crisis of nuclear war. His mistake can cost really big. WarGames was made in the midst of cold war and seemed to have adopted the theme of Nuclear war possibility shown in FailSafe. Today’s hacking attacks and server data damage are the real-world examples of WarGames.
That was the compilation of top 15 Hollywood movies that fantastically visualized upcoming futuristic technology in that era. After watching them, we can surely confirm that these stories represent a simulation of next emerging world. Today’s tech creator companies can turn to such unusual cinema and the work of visionary Sci-fi writers to make the imagined landscape tangible. Thanks to digital filmmaking technology that made it possible to bring accuracy in tomorrow’s technologically sophisticated world. We hope to see more innovations coming our way.