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Can you think of Sci–Fi films where people are bombarded with Advertising?
August 20, 2012 3:30 AM   Subscribe

Can you think of Sci–Fi films where people are bombarded with Advertising?

I'm doing a project based on the idea of futuristic online stores, I need some examples of films (kind of dystopian like Blade Runner, Total Recall etc) where people are bombarded by screens, monitors, animated posters...

Brash advertising with slogans... Massive talking heads trying to sell products...

Perhaps even videogames where this is a theme?
posted by stackhaus23 to Media & Arts (31 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
Minority Report conveys the theme you're describing pretty overtly.
posted by carolinecrane at 3:32 AM on August 20, 2012 [6 favorites]


I, Robot had the personalized adverts.
posted by tigerjade at 3:54 AM on August 20, 2012


Wall-e is a very good example of this.
posted by lydhre at 3:57 AM on August 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


Definitely Minority Report (the film, I haven't read the book), where advertising screens scan your retinas and then address you personally and advertise items based on your past purchases.

Idiocracy has everything being sponsored by brands - the US President is called "President Dwayne Elizondo Mountain Dew Herbert Camacho" and they irrigate crops with a Gatorade-style energy drink.

In one Futurama episode, adverts are inserted into Fry's dreams.
posted by EndsOfInvention at 3:58 AM on August 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


One of the Black Mirror shorts, "15 Million Merits" (wiki plot summary, major spoilers) handles this extremely well. Most flat surfaces double as screens, and intrusive ads (that cost money to skip) appear wherever you happen to be looking. One of them forms a fairly major plot point.

Excellent little bit of dystopian scifi, IMO. Absolutely soul-crushing.
posted by metaBugs at 4:00 AM on August 20, 2012 [8 favorites]


They Live. Branded. And, a book, not a movie, but a classic: The Space Merchants.
posted by zanni at 4:11 AM on August 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


The first movie that sprung to mind was AI.
posted by ThaBombShelterSmith at 4:14 AM on August 20, 2012


The upcoming "Branded" (with trailer), mentioned above, looks like it might qualify.
posted by MonkeyToes at 4:50 AM on August 20, 2012


Not a major theme, but it is used in Mass Effect. Walking around The Citadel your character is shown targeted adverts based on your character's life history and in game decisions.
posted by hjd at 4:55 AM on August 20, 2012


Idiocracy, particularly for Brawndo

It's what plants crave!
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 5:14 AM on August 20, 2012 [1 favorite]


The Fifth Element had some of this in certain scenes.
posted by Hanuman1960 at 5:28 AM on August 20, 2012 [3 favorites]


That is pretty much the entire plot of the The Space Merchants, which sadly never made it to a movie. But if a book or radio adaptation will help, it's definitely worth reading.
posted by COD at 5:43 AM on August 20, 2012


The Jaws 19 holoshark attacks Marty in Back to the Future II.
posted by hariya at 5:52 AM on August 20, 2012


They Live!
posted by .kobayashi. at 6:11 AM on August 20, 2012 [2 favorites]


Another Futurama episode had the crew being attacked by internet pop-up ads.
posted by logicpunk at 6:17 AM on August 20, 2012


Blade Runner.
posted by bru at 6:29 AM on August 20, 2012


Not necessarily exactly what you are looking for but in a late scene in Brazil Jill's truck drives down a road bordered by seemingly-endless strips of billboards.
posted by yz at 7:03 AM on August 20, 2012


I haven't seen the current remake, but if I remember correctly advertising is what leads Quaid to Rekall in Total Recall, something the remake seems to be recreating with faux advertisements for same.
posted by war wrath of wraith at 7:11 AM on August 20, 2012


Oops, I just saw that you already mention Total Recall. I'll make up for it by giving you Access Fantasy, a short story by Jonathem Lethem in his Men and Cartoons collection, where advertising is the only way for "street people" who live in cars stuck in a permanent traffic jam to access "apartment people", who are on the other side of a one-way barrier.
posted by war wrath of wraith at 7:22 AM on August 20, 2012


If you want the source for some of these, Philip K. Dick wrote about little flying commercials in the 60s.
posted by nevan at 7:24 AM on August 20, 2012


I'm not sure if Futurama counts, but in the episode a Fishfull of Dollars, they have ads in dreams. Fry has the funny tirade:

Well sure [we had ads in the 21st century], but not in our dreams. Only on TV and radio, and in magazines, and movies, and at ball games... and on buses and milk cartons and t-shirts, and bananas and written on the sky. But not in dreams, no siree.
posted by bessel functions seem unnecessarily complicated at 7:27 AM on August 20, 2012


The Island was so full of 'future advertisements' for current brands that it was sort of distracting. (That youtube clip features the extensive product placement, not the ads, but.. you get the idea.)
posted by Kololo at 7:33 AM on August 20, 2012


Not movie, but TV: Max Headroom.
Serenity.
posted by rocketpup at 8:01 AM on August 20, 2012


Not exactly advertising but more pornography, but might apply depending on what you're looking for exactly. Great movie: David Cronenberg's Videodrome
posted by pynchonesque at 9:28 AM on August 20, 2012


"Demolition Man," which was partly funded to be some major product placement for Taco Bell (the only remaining restaurant in the future) had a bit of this.

"The Truman Show" played up its product placement gag with overt ads in addition to a movie's usual passive/covert placements.

The former reminds me of The Demolished Man, the Alfred Bester novel, which featured an Advertising exec who used addictive earwormy ad-jingles to shield his mind--and thus his crime--from the probing by the psychics who police men's minds.
posted by Sunburnt at 10:41 AM on August 20, 2012


TVTropes: Advert Overloaded Future has a lot of examples.

Something of a stock dystopia recently, a popular depiction of a future where consumerism has gone mad shows a world where it is impossible to do anything - even eat, sleep or go to the bathroom - without being told by a chirpy computer screen that Soylent Soy is Crunchtastic, Brand X pillows are 20% More Awesome than your current one and unless you buy the Flushomatic 10000, there's a good chance you'll accidentally kill yourself.

posted by Rhaomi at 12:03 PM on August 20, 2012


Wall-E has some of this, with huge holo ads still running on Earth centuries after all humans have left.
posted by attercoppe at 3:29 PM on August 20, 2012


The Max Headroom TV movie, yes. Blipverts.
posted by Decani at 4:11 PM on August 20, 2012


...which ads of course no humans see...but on the Axiom the ads continue, played to a captive audience.
posted by attercoppe at 4:21 PM on August 20, 2012


A really good one is Clockwork Orange.
posted by msleann at 9:12 PM on August 20, 2012


"15 Million Merits", out of the the Charlie Brooker TV series "Black Mirror". Not a film, but depicts veryveryvery intrusive advertising in a dystopic future.
posted by illongruci at 8:03 AM on August 21, 2012


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