“. . .the hopeful vision of the future mapped out in films like 2012 unveils a Utopian ideology that, as we have just heard, leads to a murderous and brutal imposition upon society, one that is ruthless in achieving its end. Perhaps films like Mad Max are the logical sequel to films like 2012, the obvious reality to the Utopian visions so often portrayed within mainstream apocalyptic Hollywood blockbusters. At the end of The Day After Tomorrow astronauts look down from space at a frozen earth, now free from pollution (and most of the human population), an earth ready to be reborn; Deep Impact ends with the crew on the spaceship Messiah engaging in a suicide mission, unable to stop the smaller comet that causes a megatsunami, blowing themselves and the larger comet up on course to destroy the world, with nuclear warheads, with the President of America urging the world to rebuild after the blessing of a second chance; 2012 ends with a very small selection of humanity rescued on Arks (the vast majority of those rescued are those with money), sailing towards The Cape of Good Hope as the sun rises on the horizon. All of these films imagine a world reborn in ice, water, and fire, humanity now destined for a new Utopian future where we have learnt from the mistakes of our past, and will rebuild a brighter tomorrow. Yet each of these films are entrenched within despotic Utopian ideology, whereby, according to this ideology, millions of people have to die in order for a more rational and enlightened humanity to emerge, a humanity that has been corrected from its flaws and mistakes in order that a perfect society can be created.
Apparently someone who served under Stalin once said, “When the state becomes everything, it will become nothing!” In other words, the Utopian vision will be all-consuming, all doctrine, ethics, thought, belief and behaviour determined in entirety by the state until the people of the state no longer recognise their un-freedom, no longer aware of a prison without walls.
The evil committed by and under Stalin and Hitler and Mao and Pol Pot were in order for a new society to emerge, one where people “will become really free” as Stalin once said, a Utopian vision for humanity, and it is with this historical reality that the Mad Max films and The Road, are the obvious sequals these Hollywood disaster movies. . .”
You’ll Float Too: A Theology of Horror (Wipf and Stock, 2018) From the chapter “Apocalypse”