Living through a societal collapse

Remember that movie Children of Men?

Posted by Zach on July 18, 2022

I can't stop thinking about the 2006 dystopian sci-fi movie Children of Men and the way they absolutely nailed what a society that's in the beginning stages of utter collapse looks like. If you haven't seen the movie, you definitely should, here is how the opening scene sets the tone (trigger warning terrorism, bombing) check it out.

There is a bunch of stuff going on here and I'm not going to try to get into all of it but the big reveal in the opening scene is that the youngest person in the world has been killed and that's how they let the audience know that there haven't been any new childbirths in this world in the past 20 something years. Immediately what jumped out at me was how normal everything looked. Everyone continued to go about their normal lives, the news broadcast mentions that the borders that have been closed for the past 8 years will remain closed so governments continue to lurch along and do their thing.

There are none of the usual hallmarks of collapsed society from sci-fi dystopias, lot's of people are dressed for business and they are continuing to go to work. I guess to pay their mortgages even though none of it really mattered anyway. Now that I'm living through a real life slow motion societal collapse I get it though.

It's easier to continue to go through the motions.

I'm not saying the world is ending, but it's undeniable that the world has changed and society continues to "function" like a robot still doing the job it's been programmed to do even though it's gears are becoming increasing clogged with the bodies of dead citizens. Our politicians think this is acceptable as long as the robot keeps running, and here we are.