Logan’s Run (1976) – Our Technocratic Dystopia Unveiled
The 1970s were a hot era for science fiction films that took a decidedly dystopian turn. With Planet of the Apes at the close of the 60s, films like Soylent Green had infected the mass mind with the threat of the coming apocalypse, to be followed by a spate of 80s post-apocalyptic B movies and cult classics like Mad Max. One of those highly revelatory 70s films is the 1976 film adaptation of William F. Nolan’s novel, Logan’s Run, directed by Michael Anderson. As with all the dystopian films, especially 70s installments, they all seem to contain a puzzle piece of the overall real-world plan of the technocrats preparing us for the coming of the new aeon.
Hedonism rules, as the pleasure-seeking synthetic society is run by a giant A.I. SmartGrid, with the central computer tracking and tracing every movement and thought of its citizens. Segregated into various “quadrants,” different classes match up to a roughly Platonic model of Philosopher King/central computer system, the guardian class (Logan 5, played by Michael York), and the populace, some of whom are sex slaves, having offered themselves to the guardian class through a vague 70s version of the Internet. This net, however, can transport you directly to the guardian’s quarters. Meanwhile, offspring are no longer produced through sexual interaction, but grown in test tubes by unknown donor parents, recalling Huxley’s Brave New World. Ominously, the BBC has recently reported on UK legislation allowing three parent babies, where DNA will be blended from multiple donors.
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