Surveillance Cinema: 16 Movies Featuring Big Brother

10:14 AM 5/25/2017

by Mia Galuppo and Lexy Perez

From '1984' and 'Brazil' to 'The Truman Show' and 'The Net,' here are some films that might make you look over your shoulder.

'Enemy of the State'
'Enemy of the State'
Touchstone/Photofest

  • '1984'

    1984

    After a global atomic war, an omnipresent government, headed by the party leader Big Brother, persecutes individualism and uses public mind control to sustain their totalitarian rule.

  • 'Brazil'

    1985

    In a dystopian future with a buffoonish totalitarian government, the film follows Sam Lowry (Jonathan Pryce) who becomes an enemy of the state after he uses the government’s invasive files to locate a woman.

  • 'Total Recall'

    1990

    Total Recall centers on an ordinary factory worker who accidentally discovers that his current life is a fabrication based on false memories implanted into his brain by the government.

  • 'The Net'

    1995

    When systems analyst (Sandra Bullock) is given a floppy disk that links cyber terrorists to tech mogul Gregg Microsystems, she finds that her entire identity has been erased.

  • 'Gattaca'

    1997

    In a biopunk future, children are selected through preimplantation genetic diagnosis to ensure the best hereditary traits possible. The world is then spilt into genetically engineered valids and the leftover in-valids.

  • 'Enemy of the State'

    1998

    A group of rogue NSA agents kill a Congressman and try to cover it up, but a lawyer (Will Smith) accidently comes into the possession of an incriminating videotape.

  • 'The Truman Show'

    1998

    Jim Carey plays Truman Burbank, a man unaware that he is living in a constructed reality which is being broadcast around the clock to billions of people across the globe in the form of a television show.

  • 'The Matrix'

    1999

    Computer programmer Neo (Keanu Reeves) finds out the truth that humans are only able to perceive simulated reality called "the Matrix" which created by sentient machines to subdue the human population.

  • 'Minority Report'

    2002

    In the year 2054, a specialized police department called “Pre Crime” apprehends criminals based on foreknowledge provided by three psychics called "precogs."

  • 'V For Vendetta'

    2005

    V (Hugo Weaving) fights against the fascist regime that now controls the UK and imprisons homosexuals, political prisoners and other undesirables.

  • 'The Lives of Others'

    2006

    In 1984 East Berlin, a member of the secret police (Ulrich Muhe) conducts unsolicited surveillance on a playwright (Sebastian Koch) and his lover (Martina Gedeck).

  • 'Eagle Eye'

    2008

    An anonymous caller coerces Jerry Shaw (Shia LeBouf) into carrying out a plan for a possible terrorist organization. The caller ends up being a top-secret intelligence gathering supercomputer, used by the government. 

  • 'The Adjustment Bureau'

    2011

    Congressman David Norris (Matt Damon) discovers the existence of the Adjustment Bureau, a secret agency that ensures people's lives proceed as determined by "the plan."

  • 'Tinker Tailer Soldier Spy'

    2011

    Set in London in the early 1970s, the story follows former spy George Smiley (Gary Oldman) and his hunt for a Soviet double agent at the top of the British secret service.

  • 'Snowden'

    2016

    Courtesy of Toronto International Film Festival

    One of NSA's employees, Edward Snowden (Joseph Gordon Levitt), leaks the agency's illegal surveillance techniques, as classified documents, to the public and press, soon being dubbed as a traitor. 

  • 'The Circle'

    2017

    STX Entertainment
    After Mae Holland (Emma Watson) earns a job with the world's most powerful technology and social media company, she joins an experiment overseen by the company's founder (Tom Hanks), only to find out that it can be detrimental to her family, friends and humanity. 
     
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