With 'end-of-the-world' disaster movies called by Shawn Robbins of BoxOffice.com a genre of 'escapism', an art form that assuages the primal desire to get back to basics, it's long been warned that Hollywood uses TV shows and movies to eerily foreshadow future events and for 'predictive programming'.
"These types of films are often viewed as pessimistic glimpses into the future, which is certainly one valid interpretation, but they can also be self-reflective in a positive way," he told AFP. "It's easy to see post-apocalyptic and dystopian film settings as part of our inevitable doom, but we can also take them as lessons and parables because, at the heart of any good story, the human condition is explored and challenged."
Featuring a massive tectonic event that appears to begin off of the coast of Seattle, Washington which leads to a nationwide electric grid down scenario, a near total communications blackout, massive traffic jams in the cities, the complete breakdown of society, numerous bizarre and unexplained weather events and strange animal and bird behavior, the script for the movie encompasses much of what we write about almost every day on ANP.
Featuring a mad dash nearly 2000 miles across America for a man and his father-in-law in an attempt to rescue the man's pregnant wife from an unknown disaster of Biblical proportions, they run into what could inevitably come to America should the Cascadia Subduction Zone suffer a catastrophic earthquake, one that could rip apart undersea cables and disrupt internet service nationwide
And as the New Yorker reported back in July of 2015, the 'really big one' is going to strike the Cascadia Subduction Zone sooner or later and according to experts quoted in their story, "If the entire zone gives way at once, an event that seismologists call a full-margin rupture, the magnitude will be somewhere between 8.7 and 9.2. That’s the very big one."
Also warning that such a quake could happen with almost no notice at all, we see in the movie trailer the man talking to his wife who is in Seattle as if everything is normal when suddenly and without warning, the phone call is cut just after his wife tells him that something suddently turned very, very wrong. Art mimicking life?
Showing us an America breaking down into all-out lawlessness and madness, "How It Ends" is also a race against time and a present-day America suddenly cast into something out of our greatest nightmares.
So why are Hollywood and 'the elite' now putting out so many 'end-of-the-world' movies?
Whatever motivation they may have, we can absolutely learn something from most dystopian movies. With such disastrous movies showing many scenarios that we may have never thought of, each time we watch such a movie we chock it up as another learning experience and hope that we're somehow able to grow from it.
Movies have been on our mind lately here at CDC’s Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response. Especially disaster movies. They come in all kinds of flavors: deadly viruses, tornadoes, earthquakes, and, yes, even snakes on a plane.
Their special effects can be realistic enough to make us feel like we are right there in the heart of the storm. But frequently, the heroes and heroines of these movies respond to disasters in ways that bear no resemblance to what people in the real world should do.
We can nevertheless use disaster films to consider how the characters could have been more prepared or how they should have reacted if the situation they faced was real.
And should sanity and true civility one day return to America, our preparations for civil unrest now will still pay dividends in the years ahead once the next hurricane strikes or blizzard hits or the economy goes under.
We open up the comment section to any prepping tips that you might have. Your words of wisdom could save someone's life.
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