Preface


Why do we think there is a definite relationship
between Science Fiction and the apocalyptic imagination?

Paul Hardy, editor of The Overlook Film Encyclopedia, speaks of the area of concern that Science Fiction has in common with a sense of horror. He states, "How close to our fears of the effects of science and technology are those of the powers of the occult and religion" (xi).

Why is it important to look at cinema for answers?

"The 'what if ?s' of Science Fiction cinema are generally less corrosive and radical than those of the printed page, but simply because they are constructed in images (rather than words) which spring to life in the hands of an imaginative director, their effects are much more immediate and resonant" (Hardy ix).


Why these three films?

Metropolis and Things to Come at their inception were without a defined place in film.  Although Science Fiction was not recognized as a genre until the 1940s, (due to the fact that many films must be made in order to declare a genre) both films represent the beginnings.  We decided to highlight Metropolis and Things to Come because of the "cutting edge" style they still exude.  In contrast, the fifties and sixties were a time of cookie cutter replications that incorporated the elements of these staple films, over and over again. Hardy points out, "a typical story might relate how a scientist experimenting in his private laboratory found a way to break up atoms so as to release their explosive powers..." (xiii).
To be imitated is to be complimented.

As you will see, all three films use the Book of Revelation as a blueprint for their thematic structure, just as later films like Superman used these grandfather films as a guide to Science Fiction excellence.
 



Both religion and film bring into question the world we live in.

The Book of Revelation and Science Fiction films leave us with the looming question:
could this really happen?

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