Logan’s Run (1976) – Our Technocratic Dystopia Unveiled

The 23rd century, where pleasure rules in a synthetic society.

The 23rd century, where pleasure rules in a synthetic society.

By: Jay

The 1970s were a hot era for science fiction films that took a decidedly dystopian turn.   With Planet of the Apes at the close of the 60s, films like Soylent Green had infected the mass mind with the threat of the coming apocalypse, to be followed by a spate of 80s post-apocalyptic B movies and cult classics like Mad Max.  One of those highly revelatory 70s films is the 1976 film adaptation of William F. Nolan’s novel, Logan’s Run, directed by Michael Anderson.  As with all the dystopian films, especially 70s installments, they all seem to contain a puzzle piece of the overall real-world plan of the technocrats preparing us for the coming of the new aeon.

The setting for Logan’s Run is a technocratic utopian society situated in a self-contained biosphere dome based around a death cult  that participates in a monthly ritual (The Carrousel) where all citizens are killed in a “renewal” ceremony reminiscent of a Katy Perry Super Bowl halftime show.   Convinced that renewal results in reincarnation, the youth are color-coded to determine their caste, with those reaching 30 considered aged and primed for sacrifice.

Hedonism rules, as the pleasure-seeking synthetic society is run by a giant A.I. SmartGrid, with the central computer tracking and tracing every movement and thought of its citizens.  Segregated into various “quadrants,” different classes match up to a roughly Platonic model of Philosopher King/central computer system, the guardian class (Logan 5, played by Michael York), and the populace, some of whom are sex slaves, having offered themselves to the guardian class through a vague 70s version of the Internet. This net, however, can transport you directly to the guardian’s quarters.  Meanwhile, offspring are no longer produced through sexual interaction, but grown in test tubes by unknown donor parents, recalling Huxley’s Brave New World.  Ominously, the BBC has recently reported on UK legislation allowing three parent babies, where DNA will be blended from multiple donors.

Give your soul and body to the Red Lotus Death Cult's Carrousel.

Give your soul and body to the Red Lotus Death Cult’s Carrousel.

With a façade of perfection, the death ritual indicates a society that has succumbed to the ultimate dictates of scientistic quantification, where sustainability “dictates” that for every citizen born, one must die to maintain balance in the ecosphere.  Thus Logan’s Run images the very plan the Royal Society and United Nations envision, with mandated euthanasia and death panels determining the time of death according to one’s astrological chart.  It seems Logan’s technocratic society is not immune to the digital state’s manipulation of religion, with the Buddhist and Hindu imagery coming to the fore in the red lotus crystal which, in Buddhist traditions, references the heart and passion.  The lotus is also a reference to the Flower of Life in Pythagorean and Platonic mysticism, signifying the unity of the ecosphere as a whole, built up from the platonic solids. Matthieu Ricard and Trinh Thuan comment in their work on these connections, The Quantum and the Lotus, citing Platonist Roger Penrose:

“To me this spontaneous insight supports the idea that when the mind makes mathematical discoveries, it enters into contact with a realm of Platonic mathematical concepts. Roger Penrose is adamant about this:

The Lotus Flower of Life.

The Lotus Flower of Life.

I imagine that whenever the mind perceives a mathematical idea, it makes contact with Plato’s world of mathematical concepts… When mathematicians communicate, this is made possible by each one having a direct route to truth, the consciousness of each being in a position to perceive mathematical truths directly, through the process of ‘seeing’.

In various traditions of “Sacred Geometry,” the platonic solids are the building blocks of nature itself and we can surmise with the red lotus here the imagery is a sacrifice inverting the principle of life found in the symbology of the Lotus.  Platonism is thus the presupposition of the utopia, even in its esoteric and religious concepts.  Far eastern traditions have long seen a spirit of an age, a zeitgeist, at work behind long periods of time, the darkest period called kali yuga in Hinduism, for example.

Borrowing from these far eastern strands, Aleister Crowley proclaimed a “new aeon of Horus,” the crowned and conquering child, where youth and immaturity would overthrow the previous Age of Pisces, dominated by Christianity.  It is precisely this aeon Logan finds himself, where the death state reigns supreme, under the ruse of a synthetic utopia removed from nature, where plastic surgery and bodily alteration permeate Logan’s utopia.

Having plumbed the depths of nature and mastered its secrets, this future world’s utopia is in fact a dystopia, the golden age a kali yuga, where the police state agents known as “Sandmen” zap any prospective escapees (“runners”), turning them immediately to dust, hence, “sandmen.”  Logan 5 is one of these guardian class sandmen, who, as you can imagine, begins to question the authenticity of his society.   Coopted by the central computer to infiltrate the subversives who have escaped to the mysterious “Sanctuary,” Logan is commanded to become a runner, adopting their ankh symbology to go undercover.

A.I. insanity, with a SmartCity run by an insane Box bot.

A.I. insanity, with a SmartCity run by an insane Box bot.

Initially suspicious of Logan and his sex slave love interest, Jessica 6 (Jenny Agutter), the rebels inform Logan that “Sanctuary” is much further underground beneath the city.  Journeying deeper and deeper, the Dante-esque journey displays the ultimate deception – the whispers of “Sanctuary” as believed by the rebels is also not true.  “Sanctuary” is a giant freezer facility run by an insane A.I. bot named “Box” that imprisons successful escapees in a cryogenic tomb due to his programming, viewing man as a mere resource to be exploited like the fish and plankton.  Fiction once again presages reality here, with the recent proposals to alow IBM’s Watson super computer to manage healthcare for U.S. citizens as Obamacare begins.  It’s no longer far-fetched and outlandish to consider the possibility the coming SmartCities will also incorporate this centralized A.I. monitoring control grid, engaging in every totalitarian tyranny from “pre-crime” to computer-determined healthcare, as IBM’s CEO Ginni Rometty glowingly declares.

The Obamacare Palmistry Lifeclock, determining your lifespan.

The Obamacare Palmistry Lifeclock, determining your lifespan.

Having sabotaged Box’s cryogenic tomb, Logan and Jessica crawl out of their platonic cave for the first time to see the blinding light of the sun.  Once again Platonism is the underpinning of the narrative, where the city dwellers are captivated by the shadows and virtual phantoms dancing around them, never being enlightened by the light of objective Truth and the realms of higher existence.  In my recent article on Plato and Crystals, I cite the profound references in the dialogue Pheado, where Socrates reveals the earth’s dwellers toil away in a subterranean, mundane existence, unaware of higher dimensions, freedom and the true nature of reality. I wrote:

“The study of crystallography demonstrates much of this, and crystals are a big piece of this mysterious metaphysical puzzle, pointing is in the direction of higher, spiritual realms.  Amazingly, in Phaedo, Plato speaks of the higher realms (something akin to heaven) as possessing aether like we possess air.  This higher dimension is also directly connected to crystals, as the crystals we possess in our world are mere shards of the wonders of that realm in 109-111:

“Also I believe that the earth is very vast, and that we who dwell in the region extending from the river Phasis to the Pillars of Heracles inhabit a small portion only about the sea, like ants or frogs about a marsh, and that there are other inhabitants of many other like places; for everywhere on the face of the earth there are hollows of various forms and sizes, into which the water and the mist and the lower air collect. But the true earth is pure and situated in the pure heaven—there are the stars also; and it is the heaven which is commonly spoken of by us as the aether, and of which our own earth is the sediment gathering in the hollows beneath. But we who live in these hollows are deceived into the notion that we are dwelling above on the surface of the earth…

Of these and other colours the earth is made up, and they are more in number and fairer than the eye of man has ever seen; the very hollows (of which I was speaking) filled with air and water have a colour of their own, and are seen like light gleaming amid the diversity of the other colours, so that the whole presents a single and continuous appearance of variety in unity. And in this fair region everything that grows—trees, and flowers, and fruits—are in a like degree fairer than any here; and there are hills, having stones in them in a like degree smoother, and more transparent, and fairer in colour than our highly-valued emeralds and sardonyxes and jaspers, and other gems, which are but minute fragments of them: for there all the stones are like our precious stones, and fairer still.”

Logan's Dome City or Epcot Center?

Logan’s Dome City or Epcot Center?

Stunned at the light of the sun, Logan is still disillusioned from the disappointment of both his utopia and “Sanctuary” exposed as shams.  Seeking some refuge, Logan and Jessica wander upon the ruins of Washington D.C., which had apparently been destroyed centuries before in some environmental cataclysm.  That Logan’s Atlantis is built upon the ruins of America is not accidental – this is precisely what Francis Bacon predicted in his esoteric work, The New Atlantis, prognosticating the discovery of the new world would be the future site of the coming technocratic wonder state, founded upon the empirical scientistic methodology of the Enlightenment.  Atlantis in Logan’s day eventually suffers the same fate as the myths of ancient Atlantis tell, where unbridled technology in the hands of a detached elite becomes self-destructive.

Robot mind control!

Robot mind control!

Like the unbelievers of Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, Logan discovers the dome-dwellers will not believe his discoveries of other lands and worlds outside the biosphere, and realizes he must face the central A.I. computer system.  Placed under an MK ULTRA-style brainwashing procedure, Logan battles the central system and somehow overcomes, resulting in the breakdown of the mainframe and the self-destruction of the dome.  Fleeing the collapse, Logan and Jessica lead the survivors to the proof of the “old ways,” the sight of an old man who functions as the Jungian sage and repository of gnosis of the old ways.

Life returns to normal with the youthful refugees discovering their own alienation and divorce from nature, where they had so long subsisted in a self-imposed tech prison erected on a false religious ideology.  In essence, Sanctuary was real, it just wasn’t found anywhere in the nihilistic, hedonistic frauds of the system.  The pro-life message of Logan’s Run is refreshing in contrast to the death culture obsession of modern Hollywood productions.  Indeed, it appears we are on the verge of the end of the old ways, as we prepare to enter into the “final revolution” of the Fabian technocrats, who have prepared a zoo-like existence in the coming virtualsphere for the enslaved herd.  But don’t worry – we can always look forward to the red death lotus ritual next year, where Katy Perry and Madonna will celebrate the ritual sacrifice of our troops for the glories of the Global Death State.

12 Comments on Logan’s Run (1976) – Our Technocratic Dystopia Unveiled

  1. First three paragraphs : by far the most depressing thing I have read (honestly), though somewhat strangely comical too (even if in a dark kind of way).

    It did end on a good note. So that is something.

  2. Best. Movie. Ever.

    And…best “to the point” analysis!

  3. Michael Sean // February 25, 2015 at 5:57 am // Reply

    I seem to remember in my childhood that there was also a TV series of Logan’s Run, as well as Planet of the Apes.

    I love those 1970s dystopian sci-fi movies. They were highly revealing in many ways. Scarily for someone of my age we are watching it all unfold, except I doubt there are any Charlton Hestons or Michael Yorks to save us from the psychopathic desires of the elite.

  4. Just saw this recently, and I thought I’d add to the discussion. First, we notice that the spectators to the death ritual are frantically cheering. The “renewal” explanation is bogus, thus, they are cheering their own destruction, given that they are soon to follow suit. A parallel can be drawn here with all the lies of modernity, where the diversity/tolerance/PC/everybody-gets-a-trophy religion is worshipped by those it’s designed to destroy, under the pretense of liberation. Second, when Francis tracks Logan down he asks, “Is this good? Is this what you want?” implying that the lie is preferable to the truth. The same stance by characters who are aware of the falsity of the system in which they live, but choose to uphold it nonetheless, is also exemplified by Holly in They Live, Cypher in The Matrix, and others that escape me at this moment.

    • Exactly. Another great forgotten sci fi I recommend is Cypher with Lucy Liu and Jeremy Northam if you haven’t seen it.

      • I have seen it many times. In fact, I went ahead and extracted the contents from the disc at the end of the movie. I don’t know anyone else who has, but I’m sure there’s at least another nut out there who examined frame-by-frame as the contents scrolled past. They really provide the back story. I’m gonna go ahead and paste them here since you’re a fan, but if it’s too long and clutters your page I can remove them (not a fan of spam myself). Here is what it says:

        Sunways Security File #247174y510987h3df8708
        This is a Code Orange File. Any persons found in possession of this material without adequate Level 6 Security Clearance will be immediately prosecuted under Sunways Special Order 43875.

        Foster, Rita
        A.K.A. Dr. Kelley Doris, Natassia Sarbinski, Amy Green, Namie Tsukemodo, Y(?) Fung-Yu, Kitty Wells, Ju Pau Killbit, Horatia Delusentopolis, Jill Hopkins, Akita Spools, Francesca Pistolesi, Dorlissa “Hurricane” Trubadore, Anias Schmidt, Antionette [sic] Dubois, Ilsa Von Kustanst, Erica Sinyor, Ika

        Vital Stats: Sex: Female, Race: Asian, Height: 5’6″, Weight: 105 pounds

        Born: January 6, 1971

        Education: Peking Opera, PHD in Criminology and Behavioral Sciences, Stanford University

        Present whereabouts: Unknown

        ***Personal note: at this point the stylized big-lettered name of the file comes into focus, but the number of the security file is different; it now reads: Sunways Security File #247174y514543gcfdgfcjge454u5***

        Orphaned at the age of four when her parents were executed by government shock troops for “insurgency and anarchist ties”, Rita Foster’s original name was Tsing Lung. She was adopted by a family of circus acrobats known as the Panda Clan, famous for unusual “Panda-like” black markings on their skin. To protect her from the clutches of the state orphanage they painted to resemble their own and took her on a cross country tour. Under Panda tutelage, Foster became a first rate contortionist, performing in the small towns and villages which dot the countryside of the Southern provinces of China. In 1976, Hong Tao, a former strongman saw her act. Recognizing her talent he brought Peking Opera where she acrobat training. By the age of ten, she became a featured trapeze artist. In spite of her success, she longed to escape from the brutal life of the circus.
        ————————–
        During the 1982 world tour of the Peking Opera, she defected to the West. Her first home outside of China was in Rome, Italy, where she scraped together a living as a street performer. Little is known of this period. It has been rumored that where she first met SABASTIAN [sic] ROOKS, who at that time may have orchestrated the illegal sale of priceless artifacts from the Vatican. The procurement of these religious objects was secretly ordered by the highest echelons of the Catholic Church to assist in easing its own financial woes. Foster may have been employed by Rooks to help steal these items from vaults hidden deep in the bowels of the Vatican City and later replace them with flawless forgeries. Most famous of these pieces was the Shroud of Turin which Rooks is rumored to have kept for himself.
        ————————–
        In 1983, exactly one year later, Foster crossed the Atlantic to New York. It is at this time that Foster acquired her American name and citizenship, presumably with the assistance of Rooks. Foster had little difficulty adapting to the American lifestyle, having studied English in Italy. In a very short period of time, she became a fashion model. By the age of sixteen she was courted by New York’s top agencies, but she turned her back on the fashion industry when she was accepted to Stanford University. There she studied behavioral sciences, eventually specializing in criminology. Her 1994 graduate thesis “Aberrant Behavior of the Unconscious Criminal” caused a great controversy, linking criminal behavior with the subconscious mind. Foster argued that latent identities exist in recesses of the cerebral cortex. Some of these identities are antisocial by nature and therefore inclined to criminal behavior. Her paper argued that these aberrant entities served an essential function in the evolution of our social design. “By challenging moral standards they invoke change.” Therefore she reasoned, antisocial behavior is a positive force for societal progression.
        ————————–
        So explosive was this notion that the Stanford psychology department tried to suppress the publication of Foster’s findings. Angered but unable to fight back Foster turned her back on academia. At this critical juncture in her life, Rooks once again appeared on the scene. There is no clear evidence of their meeting but close friends of Foster claimed that she had been invited to a remote island in the South Pacific to spend time on Rooks’ yacht. In 1996 all traces of Foster vanished. While there is no conclusive evidence to link her to Rooks’ operations in this period, she may have participated in Rook’s [sic] famous “Triad Into Highjacking” [sic]. This constituted a major security breach within the Triad of megacorporations, of which Sunways is a member. It would seem that Foster had come to embody her own thesis of the criminal mind. She is suspected of helping Rooks spread disinformation to Sunways’ sister company, New Paths Technologies and seed agents in Sunways’ most sensitive information centers. By the end of 2000 it became apparent that Rita Foster was Rook’s [sic] number one operative. Whenever Sunways has required Rooks’ services, his chief representative has been Foster. While contact with her remains indirect, it appears that her relationship with Rooks may extend beyond the professional. In other words, Foster may be Rooks’ Achilles heel. If she is destroyed, Sunways may have a chance of seriously damaging Rooks’ counter-Triad operations. It is the recommendation of the Sunways Security Chief Francis C. Callaway that Rita Foster be targeted for elimination. This a Code Orange Termination Order, Code #48754354.

        Terminate with extreme prejudice.

      • Awesome. Man, now would’ve been the time to post my coming Twin Peaks analysis.

  5. Haven’t seen that show, but I know it’s a thing in various circles. Post it when you’re ready.

1 Trackback / Pingback

  1. Logan’s Run (1976) – Our technocratic dystopia unveiled | Nobola

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: