Analysis: Spielberg’s “Minority Report”

As part of our ongoing study of the works of Philip K. Dick and films based on or inspired by his influential writings, we have taken a closer look at Steven Spielberg’s Minority Report. Our first viewing of this special-effects-filled sci-fi mystery-thriller years ago was for entertainment. This time we approached it with the question: How plausible is the story when its conceptual framework is compared to our NoetiTaoist™ philosophy and Noetitek™-based “Theory of Everything,” including its nine-dimensional structure for endlessly-processing Omniverse? Spielberg obviously spared no expense in trying to make the story scientifically sound, including assembling a group of science advisors. 

The setting for Minority Report is Washington, DC, in the year 2054, where pre-criminals identified by mutant-psychics (“precognitives”) are apprehended by Precrime law enforcers before they can commit pre-visioned murders. In reality, is there a preset future that might be somehow pre-viewable like watching movie clips, yet also be changeable by pre-awareness? Minority Report flirts with the error we pointed out in our review of Paycheck: that if you could see a future which is predetermined for a given space-time continuum and take subsequent actions to change it, then the future you were looking into could not have been predetermined—it cannot have been THE future. 

However, unlike Paycheck, the full unfolding of Minority Report reflects tacit acknowledgement of the fact that: if you can change the future then it is not preset but, instead, a matter of something like “probability.” In the end, the Precrime Division is rightly shut down. Yet how can mere probability be pre-visionable with movie-like clarity? Such visions can only be defined as delusions—day-mares. But could all of the pre-visions have been delusional? In the scene where precog Agatha guides Anderton’s real-time flight through the shopping mall, her ESP is 100% accurate and she shows no sign of derangement. Our answer is, therefore, no. A link is missing: parallel universes. 

Spielberg appears to allude to perceivable alternate/parallel universes. Agatha, while saying “the dead don’t die,” envisions the Andertons’ son existing elsewhere in Omniverse as a teenager and then adult. Or are we to accept the absurdity that she is looking into the preset future that became impossible when Sean “passed away”? If the story were to draw on our theory of multidimensionality and Omniverse—the timeless processing of omnipresent parallel universes—it would reconcile the paradox of a preset future that can be pre-visioned yet altered. Changes made to avert undesired outcomes would become understandable as seamless shifts among manifold “parallel” realities. 

Precrime’s precogs sometimes make minority reports (i.e., fail to achieve consensus), which comports with our take: that their visions represent glimpses into one or more parallel universes—universes that are preset but selectable according to free will. No minority report pertained to Anderton’s pre-visioned murdering of Leo Crow, yet we see that even though the hive’s pre-vision was unanimous, the combined effect of Anderton’s and Crow’s free will shifted the leading-edge of their consciousness seamlessly into an alternate future. Our view, which fully accommodates both preset futures and free will, is derived from our revolutionary Theory of Everything and our NoetitTaoist™ philosophy. 

We obviously agree with the movie’s message that Precrime is a bad idea. However, this is not to say that there is no better place for precogs than an isolated island. They could serve as advisors to choice-making individuals, corporations, and government agencies. The truth is: “precogs” are doing that right now and have been for millennia.

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One Response to “Analysis: Spielberg’s “Minority Report””

  1. Stark Raven Says:

    How can we really know that we have any measure of free will?

  2. PluribusOne™ Says:

    Early in the story, Chief Anderton of the D.C. Precrime Division demonstrates the premise for his unit’s Miranda-free operation via the catching of a ball that would otherwise have fallen to the floor. The logic of his demonstration may seem compelling, but the comparison is faulty because a wooden ball has no choice but to fall, whereas a human being has moral choices.

    If humans do not have choices then we are nothing but elaborately designed puppets, androids, and we can know that this is not true by making a direct and scientific comparison between a human being and a puppet. A person would have to have incredibly low self-esteem to believe that he or she is no different than a Cabbage Patch doll with strings.

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