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August 13, 2017


Does this movie legitimize the surveillance state? 

The Circle is a movie about a company that looks like Google 



A review of movie THE CIRCLE.

by David S






From the internet, this storyline: "A woman lands a dream job at a powerful tech company called the Circle, only to uncover an agenda that will affect the lives of all of humanity. Secrets are lies. Sharing is caring.  Privacy is theft."

From the book's jacket: "When Mae Holland is hired to work for the Circle, the world's most powerful internet company, she feels she's been given the opportunity of a lifetime. The Circle, run out of a sprawling California campus, links user's personal emails, social media, banking, and purchasing with their universal operating system, resulting in one online identity and a new age of civility and transparency." 

This universal operating system is called TruYou-( from the book) "one account, one identity, one password, one payment system, per person." Also from the book a description of their  healthcare: A deceptively input sensor by drinking a smoothie, "it'll collect data on your heart rate, blood pressure, cholesterol, heat flux, caloric intake, sleep duration, sleep quality, digestive efficiency, on and on. ...It measures, the pH of your sweat, ...It detects, your posture....Blood and tissue oxygen, your red blood cell count, and things like step count. "Whatever, they have you monitored inside and out.

IMHO, the movie, THE CIRCLE with Tom Hanks and Emma Watson is an agitprop: (from an online Merriam-Webster dictionary), propaganda, especially political propaganda promulgated chiefly in literature, drama, music, or art. In addition, propaganda means the spreading of ideas, information, or rumor for the purpose of helping or injuring an institution, a cause, or a person.

My thought:  The movie, THE CIRCLE, is an affirmation of the subjugation and/or subordination of all individuals to the corporation. In other words, it's a one-world government or in Bush's words, A New World Order. Put in another way.....Mae battles between good and evil represented by her boyfriends: Good is represented by Mercer, her pre-Circle boyfriend and evil by Ty, the guy who invented THE CIRCLE.

While we are relaxing and being entertained, the movie, THE CIRCLE, helps uphold the case of "Corporate Big Brother" is watching and is okay and is necessary, and at the same time, injures our traditional values of independence and privacy: don't bother me, I won't bother you. 

The movie overwhelms us to a number of ideas that are simply not true: everyone is being watched over for our benefit (so one doesn't hurt oneself), everyone conforms to society's rules, no one is ostracized, ( they just hint 'you better conform'), everyone could/should accept corporate healthcare as it will cure everyone even if one has multiple sclerosis,  everyone must/will register and vote because it is more democratic, the people have control, THE CIRCLE Corporation is glorified, the employees are all happy, and everyone is totally "loveey doveey", and, added to that, ad nauseam, subliminal messages across the scene, most of which I could not read.  Whew! If you got the full impact of that last sentence, congratulations. The tools created by THE CIRCLE (from the book, "actually manufacture unnatural extreme social needs."

I believe we are being monitored already but not for our benefit. It's for the benefit of selling more and more products by watching and knowing our habits or addictions. The movie shows that this Huge Monolithic corporation, through the new, ubiquitous, 'everyone can afford one' camera, called  SeeChange,  eventually wants to know and see everything about everyone using millions of these small, 'hardly can see them',  cameras. "ALL THAT HAPPENS MUST BE  KNOWN" is their mission. That in the future there will be absolutely no privacy and that following the crowd is the only way to conform. And as previously mentioned, all your bodily functions are monitored. Where does our own responsibility fit in and where does our God/nature intuitiveness go?

My opinion of THE CIRCLE is based on my Vietnam experience (69-71) working for the Army's ASA and then Stateside NSA, where I worked with sophisticated technology that spied on the enemy and friendlies, I believe the story about THE CIRCLE is a not so far-fetched, futuristic story to remind us that we are being watched and you better get used to the "Big Brother" idea, because THE CIRCLE is an even Bigger Brother. Think, of the combination of combination of Google, Apple, Amazon and Facebook and NSA with small cameras placed everywhere for anyone to see anything anytime.

However, there is one redeeming value of the movie. And that is: there are so many mixed messages that you walk away confused and not knowing what you saw:  a perfect example of propaganda,feeling helpless against the corporation.






Henry Makow received his Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Toronto in 1982. He welcomes your comments at