Movie Name: Idiocracy
Studio: Judgemental Films
Release Date(s): September 1, 2006
MPAA Rating: R
Corporal Joe Bauers (Luke Wilson) just wants to do his time and get his paycheck. When he is volunteered for a test on cryogenics, he finds himself frozen with a prostitute named Rita (Maya Rudolph). Unfortunately, disaster strikes and Bauers (now going by the name “Not Sure”) finds himself in a future where he is the smartest man alive…and he could be humanity’s only hope. On a quest to find a time machine with Rita and his not-so-smart lawyer Frito Pendejo (Dax Shepard), Joe just wants to go home!
Directed by Mike Judge (who also co-wrote the script), Idiocracy is a comedy satire. The movie received a small box office release and received positive reviews. Since the movie’s release, it has gained a cult following.
I saw Idiocracy when it was relatively new. It began airing on cable rather quickly and like Office Space, the repeat plays gave viewers plenty of chances to see it. I love the message of this movie, and the scary part is that it is becoming more and more a reality every day.
The movie indicates that society instead of getting smarter is getting dumber because intelligence isn’t the favored trait among natural selection (illustrated in the great opening scene). I think current viewings of TV and what people call entertainment is probably a pretty apt support for this model. The movie could do a lot more with the premise since it is so rich, but Judge kept it short and sweet…which helps nail the point home quickly.
The cast also works well. I like Luke Wilson as the average joe and Maya Rudolph as his sidekick who fits in better in the future. Dax Shepard (who “likes money”) is also good as the only local who is kind of on Joe’s side. The actors in the movie speak an almost foreign language due to their slack-jaw pronunciation and lazy talking, and I even feel I’ve heard this a few times in public…where you aren’t sure if a person is speaking English or not (and they are).
The movie is relatively low budget and you can see this in the visuals at time. The special effects of the wasteland future aren’t always the best, but they are in good nature and still smart. The idea that Costco is the be-all-end-all location for everything and misinterpretations of The Great Dictator has Charlie Chaplin causing World War II are smarter than many easy jokes in most comedies.
Idiocracy is almost a horror movie because this seems like the future we are heading toward. The slippery slope is much more slippery now than in 2006 when Idiocracy is made and the crumbling of society seems faster. It is just fantasy of course…there is no way that a wrestler or reality TV star could ever even come close to being president…right?