List of dystopian films

This is a list of films commonly regarded as dystopian.

Many of the listed works are not controversial, in the sense that their dystopian character is generally acknowledged. However, some are not universally classified as dystopias. Critics do not always agree whether a particular work is genuinely dystopian or whether - despite the more menacing and dehumanising elements in the society it portrays - it is really an attempt to depict a heterotopia, a society that is neither utopian nor entirely bad, but different from our own.

Such debates frequently surround literary and cinematic works that do not show the classic characteristics of dystopian fiction, such as a government like entity that seeks total control of individuals' lives.

In addition, the following movie list is broken down into categories: those which display an obvious dystopia theme, post-apocalyptic (i.e. Hobbesian), those which ultimately follow a more cyberpunk theme, and those which are more miscellaneously categorized, being that they are in between dystopia/cyberpunk and something else, as previously noted, "not like our society." While the movies appearing under the miscellaneous theme "may" have dystopia-like qualities they do not focus on a dystopian society in their plot. Dystopian films usually display pivotal traits that most utopian societies would avoid. One common trait is mass dehumanization. Where nearly all individuals are required, voluntarily or by force, to eliminate some "natural" emotional, physical, or free will quality as to conform to a society's “unnatural" greater good goals. Movies like "A Clockwork Orange" may seem dystopian, but may not qualify since it is only one criminal individual who is voluntarily dehumanized and not the whole of society. This film then becomes a heterotopia. In "Blade Runner", it is rather ambiguous whether Los Angeles in 2019 is depicted in that film to be a dystopia, or a utopia, however evidence from the film suggests that it was a dystopia, due to the climate, pollution and over-population of the featured LA. Many of the movies under the miscellaneous heading are subjective and up for more careful scrutiny when considering the definition of dystopia.

Dystopia (governmental/societal)

* "Nineteen Eighty-Four" (based on the George Orwell novel of the same name), filmed on two occasions: in 1956 by Michael Anderson and in 1984 by Michael Radford
* "Aachi & Ssipak"
* "Æon Flux"
* "Batman Begins"
* "Battle Royale" based on the novel and manga of the same name.
* "The Beach" based on the 1996 novel by Alex Garland.
* "Blade Runner"
* "Brazil"
* "Children of Men"
* "Code 46"
* "Deathrace 2000" and the remake, "Death Race"
* "Demolition Man"
* "District 13"
* "Escape from New York" and its sequel, "Escape from L.A."
* "Equilibrium"
* "Fahrenheit 451"
* "Gattaca"
* "The Handmaid's Tale"
* "Harrison Bergeron", a 1995 made-for-cable film adapted from Kurt Vonnegut's 1961 short story of the same name.
* "The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy", based on Douglas Adams's eponymous novel, particularly "Vogsphere" (the Vogons' home planet), where independent thought is physically discouraged and nearly all aspects of life are controlled by an overgrown bureacracy.
* "Idiocracy"
* "The Island"
* "Judge Dredd", based on the comic Judge Dredd.
* "Logan's Run"
* ""
* "Metropolis" by Fritz Lang
* "Mutant Chronicles" based on the RPG series Mutant Chronicles
* "Pink Floyd The Wall (film) from the Pink Floyd album The Wall
* "The Omega Man"
* "The Prisoner"
* "Nowhere Man", a TV series.
* "The Running Man" loosely adapted from the novel of the same name written by Stephen King under the alias Richard Bachman
* "A Scanner Darkly" adapted from the novel of the same name written by Philip K. Dick
* "Screamers"
* "Serenity"
* "Sleeper"
* "Soldier"
* "Southland Tales"
* "Soylent Green"
* "THX 1138"
* "The Trial"
* "V for Vendetta", based on a graphic novel by Alan Moore.
* "WALL-E"
* "Z.P.G."


* "Akira"
* "Avalon"
* "Blade Runner"
* "Ergo Proxy"
* "eXistenZ"
* "Ghost in the Shell"
* "Johnny Mnemonic"
* "Kin-Dza-Dza!"
* "The Matrix series"
* "Metropolis" by Osamu Tezuka
* "Natural City"
* "Strange Days"
* "Renaissance"


* "28 Days Later and 28 Weeks Later"
* "A Boy and His Dog"
* "Cherry 2000"
* "Deathlands"
* "Def-Con 4"
* "Fist of the North Star"
* "Genesis II"
* "I Am Legend"
* "Jericho (TV series)"
* "Le Dernier Combat"
* "La Jetée"
* "Mad Max" film series
* "Night of the Living Dead"
* "On The Beach" and its 2000 remake "On the Beach"
* ""
* "Parasite"
* "Planet Earth"
* "Quintet"
* "Right At Your Door"
* "Shaun of the Dead"
* "Six-String Samurai"
* "Tank Girl"
* "The Matrix (series)"
* "The Postman"
* "The Quiet Earth"
* "The Stand (TV miniseries)"
* "The Ultimate Warrior"
* "Twelve Monkeys"
* "Ultraviolet"
* "Waterworld"
* "Zardoz"

Corporate based dystopias (nongovernmental)

* "Alien movies"
* "Charlie Jade"
* "The Final Cut"
* "Fortress"
* "Hardware"
* "The Island"
* "Johnny Mnemonic"
* ""
* "One Point O"
* ""
* "Resident Evil"
* "RoboCop"
* "Rollerball" (1975)
* "Soylent Green"
* "Super Mario Bros."
* "Tank Girl"
* "Total Recall"
* "The Truman Show"

Alien controlled dystopias (both governmental and societal)

* "Dark City"
* "They Live" adapted from " [ Eight O'Clock in the Morning] " by Ray Nelson
* "The Tripods"
* "Battlefield Earth"


* "Alphaville, une étrange aventure de Lemmy Caution"
* "The City of Lost Children"
* "Death Race 2000"
* "Encrypt"
* "Idiocracy"
* "Planet of the Apes"
* "Pleasantville"
* "Threads"

Disputed dystopias

* "A Clockwork Orange"
* "Double Dragon"fact|date=July 2008

ee also

* List of dystopian literature
* List of dystopian music, TV programs, and games
* Apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic fiction


* [ A list of 50 dystopian films]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • List of dystopian music, TV programs, and games — This is a list of depictions of dystopian themes in music, TV programmes and games, including computer games and role playing games. Music * Various songs by pioneer punk band The Clash condemn a dystopian society in the real world, one that… …   Wikipedia

  • List of dystopian literature — This is a list of novels commonly viewed as dystopian literature.The majority of the listed works are not controversial, in the sense that their dystopian character is generally acknowledged. However, some are not universally classified as… …   Wikipedia

  • List of cyberpunk works — The following is a list of works commonly ascribed to the cyberpunk genre of science fiction. While some of these works mdash; such as Neuromancer and Blade Runner mdash; have become accepted as archetypal examples of cyberpunk, the… …   Wikipedia

  • List of computer-animated films — A computer animated film commonly refers to feature films that have been computer animated to appear three dimensional on a movie screen. While traditional 2D animated films are now done primarily with the help of computers, the technique to… …   Wikipedia

  • Films based on video games — comprise a fairly new genre that first gained limited popularity in the late 1990s and 2000s. Movies closely related to the computer and video game industries had been done previously, such as Tron and The Wizard , but only after the release of… …   Wikipedia

  • List of Mystery Science Theater 3000 episodes — This page is a list of episodes for the American TV series Mystery Science Theater 3000. In total, 198 episodes were broadcast from 1988 to 1999. Contents 1 Season index 2 Explanation of entries 3 KTMA TV …   Wikipedia

  • List of cultural references to A Clockwork Orange — The novel A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess and the movie adaptation have wide ranging influences on popular culture, such as popular music, television, movies and other entertainment media.Thill, Scott, 2002, St. James Encyclopedia of… …   Wikipedia

  • List of Russian people — The Millennium of Russia monument in Veliky Novgorod, featuring the statues and reliefs of the most celebrated people in the first 1000 years of Russian history …   Wikipedia

  • List of apocalyptic and post-apocalyptic fiction — This is a list of apocalyptic and post apocalyptic fiction works, sorted by the nature of the catastrophe portrayed.World War III and other apocalyptic wars (between humans)Films1930s*1936. Things to Come , in which an extended future second… …   Wikipedia

  • List of fictional companies — This is a list of notable fictional companies. Entries in this list must have received significant coverage in reliable sources that are independent of the subject.These are nonexistent companies created for dramatic or literary purposes in a… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.