Must-see movies inspired by Philip K. Dick

Oscar winner Matt Damon and Emily Blunt star in The Adjustment Bureau, the latest adaptation of a Philip K. Dick story. David Norris is an ambitious, well respected politician, on the verge of a landmark change in his life and a seat into the U.S Senate. But after Norris crosses paths with Elise Sellas, an aspiring contemporary ballet dancer, his fate changes dramatically – but he has no control over what that fate is as The Adjustment Bureau step in.

Adapted from the short story The Adjustment Team, The Adjustment Bureau has all the classic Dick hallmarks of sci-fi conspiracies and baffling technology. Released on Blu-ray and DVD on July 4th, we take a look at the other acclaimed novels from the author’s tome that have made a successful transition into feature films.

!(feature_l)! Blade Runner – 1982
The cult daddy of Sci-Fi dystopian future movies, Harrison Ford plays a ‘blade runner’ – an agent who hunts down a group of escaped human-like robot replicants. As ever with Phillip K Dick, it’s a clever, complex story that defies paraphrasing. Trivia fans and literary scholars amongst you will know that the book that became the film Blade Runner is actually called Do Androids dream of Electric Sheep?

Total Recall – 1990
Big Arnie – then at the height of his game – plays a man who takes a virtual holiday on Mars with the added option of being a secret agent. From there things get very confusing as the lines between real and imaginary become more and more blurred. Schwarzenegger playing a confused man with his brain wiped – was there ever a better role for him!

!(feature_r)! Minority Report – 2002
Another multi-layered story from Dick concerning Washington’s PreCrime Police Force, Tom Cruise plays a police captain under suspicion of being about to commit murder. The force contains mutated humans – precogs – who came predict crime before it happens, the trouble is someone is manipulating the system to frame Cruise. Famed for its ‘drag and drop graphics’ scene where Cruise moves around data on a large screen – something you can now do on your iPhone for real less than a decade on.

Paycheck – 2003
Near future, brain wiping, confusing multi-layered storyline… is this ringing any bells here? Dick’s short story is brought to the screen by John Woo with Ben Affleck taking the leading role as an engineer who recreates competitor’s technology with improvements only to have his memory wiped at the end of each job. But of course that is only part of the story and what ensues makes for a classy thriller…

!(feature_l)! A Scanner Darkly – 2006
Following common Dick themes, this movie is set in a dystopian future under police surveillance where America has lost the war on drugs. Director Richard Linklater chose to use a technique called rotoscoping where each frame is painted over giving a combination animation/real life look. The end result split the critics but is now something of a cult hit.

_The Adjustment Bureau is released on Blu-ray Triple Play and DVD on July 4th. To order a copy click here

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