Adapting Marxists’ influential philosophies in movies has been a common theme since ages now. Marxists criticized capitalism by associating it with unequal distribution of wealth, development of Oligopoly markets and also the exploitation of the economy and its underlying culture. The unsustainability of capitalism and how it impacts the lives of normal people have been discussed in various movies. Karl Marx’s philosophies and ideologies were later explored and worked upon by other revolutionary philosophers like Che Guevara and Rosa Luxemburg and films about them have also been made. These great figures had a common ideology — communism is the key to releasing all humanity from the slavery of the mind and soul. But in order to achieve this, the upper industrial class must fall down and the lower industrial class must rise to come on par with them.
If you look back at the history of cinema, some of the best movies of all time revolve around socialism and its impact right from the starting of time. Some films may portray this in a more direct way while others may have a subtler method of adapting these philosophies. The diversity of these movies shows the dimensions to which these philosophies have spread their roots into. So, let’s dwell into some of these great films that make you perceive socialism from the unique point of view of different directors. You can watch several of these movies on Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime.
16. Fight Club (1999)
‘Fight Club‘ immensely emphasized on the consumerist culture of today’s society and how it is responsible for the feminization of today’s men. The film revolves around the life of a man who is done with his capitalistic life. That’s when he decides to build a life outside his white collar by starting a fight club with a stranger he meets on a flight named Tyler Durden (Brad Pitt), who is the ideal example of an alpha male according to him. But Tyler has bigger plans with the members of the Fight Club that go way beyond underground fights and soap making business. The Narrator (Edward Norton) later discovers the true identity of Tyler Durden which may be too hard for him to digest and also gives him a shocking reflection of his own deepest ideologies.
15. Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
‘Pan’s Labyrinth’ touches the theme of fascism all throughout the movie, which may not be too evident if you watch it with a not so open mind. From the outside, it’s just another ‘Narnia’ where a little girl is guided by fauns and fairies and has to prove her loyalty as a princess. But the film often parallels between reality and fantasy. In the real world, the girl’s stepfather complaints about his war against the communists and how “the reds” have been polluting the world. In the parallel fantasy, every monster the girl meets is more or less a different representation of fascism. The monsters do look terrifying but none of them are as terrifying as her real life that is dominated by her anti-communist father. This movie is pure art with its metaphoric representations of fascism and how it subtly relies on fantasy to make you understand more about the fascists in Spain back in 1944.
14. V For Vendetta (2005)