Wally, Kim Stanley Robinson, Academy Award discussed on Marketplace


This, summer is the, tenth anniversary of when. The, world met. Our, beloved Wally the little trash compactor that could the movie, went on to win the Academy Award. For best animated picture and made five hundred million dollars worldwide it also left another legacy a picture of earth's possible future that felt all too possible then and maybe even more so now to decipher what while he was trying to tell. Us I talked to Hugo award winning science fiction writer. Kim Stanley Robinson welcome to the program. Oh my pleasure Molly I know you try to avoid this the. Prescience conversation. But at least in your own work but, this movie, is remarkably prescient in some ways. It came out in two thousand eight which was, just about a year after the first iphone came out and, depicts an eventual state of humanity where people stare at screens all. The time you could argue that ten years later that's remarkably accurate What do you think about that and what else do you see in the film. That. You think could is is becoming true before our eyes well it wasn't a hard call to make in two thousand eight it was, just social commentary on what was already happening at the time and two thousand eight and now are not that different socially and culturally I guess. You could just say more has happened and I think while he was a good intervention because there's good things that's happened in the last ten years as well as the bad parts, of of the consumer society coming more and more, true there's also, the Paris accord there's. A, worldwide awareness. Of, climate change and environmental collapse and that was also true, in two thousand eight so I would. Just say that the situation has been exacerbated in a way that Wally is pointing out things aren't as bad as they are in Wally but we're we're trending in that direction both in good ways and the really bad ways will yeah. There's also this very obvious message about how convenience becomes Enslavement I mean is that that? Is, not an uncommon theme in science fiction and I wonder if. It's always been obvious really the humans in that movie they're essentially like infants adulthood has been taken away and against that Wally looks like Susa. I you know he's a worker bee he doesn't. He has a stupid job to to package trash into giant skyscraper like columns since it's pointless in a way and he's just beavering away at it but then he begins to make all kinds of. Mature adult decisions falls in. Love joins revolution and overthrows the social order that already, exists the message is super clear and I think. It made people uncomfortable at the time in two thousand eight and I think it's still should make a. Little uncomfortable did it do you think what was. The what, were the conversations about that what were people saying well conservative commentators were saying this. Is. Some kind of environmentalist scare message and I I saw Wally in a movie theater in bar harbor at the, edge of Acadia national park it was middle America on a summer. Vacation, seen that movie in a theatre where you got pizza while. You watch the movie and every movie gets around of applause while he, did not get around if applause the audience, knew that it was being criticized. For its habits and. There were lots of giant soft drinks in. The theater as people, were, watching the, movie and then we. Were sitting. Back in recliners because of the pizza format of this particular theater, it's one of the very few satires that I think pokes a needle right in. The in the heart of our lifestyle you know the way that humanity is essentially, saved is is through the actions of a few I. Mean I'm thinking about the, theater that you described watching this movie and not everybody wakes up not everybody. Wants to in fact most sounds like it seems like. Don't right. Are we are too comfortable to? Embrace autonomy and independence and I? Guess I wonder what? The, film also says about, leadership well I think it's a good message. In the, leadership can Come from..

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