Since the beginning of movies, their creators liked to imagine what would the world be like in the future. Once they did, they transformed their vision into a movie, usually a science fiction one, but not always. As a result, there have been multiple older movies that took place in the future, a specific year that seemed distant at the time of the movie’s release.


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This year is no exception. Several old movies exist that are set in 2022. It’s interesting to watch them and compare the creators’ vision with the real world, seeing how accurate they were or weren’t. While they often missed the mark, that doesn’t make them any less entertaining for the modern audience.

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5/5 Soylent Green (1973)

Even though it was released in the 1970s, Soylent Green managed to capture some current world issues. These most notably include Earth’s overpopulation and the lack of food. In the movie, the world decides to solve the crisis by introducing Soylent, a synthetic food. However, there’s more to it than meets the eye, as the main character, Charlton Heston’s detective Thorn eventually learns. That puts him in danger from people with great influence.

The less the viewers know about the plot before watching the movie, the better, as it offers more than one surprise. Charlton Heston doesn’t disappoint in the leading role, and it’s easy to sympathize with Thorne, especially once he has to fight to stay alive and uncover the truth. The movie has aged well and still has the power to make the audience think.

4/5 Time Runner (1993)

One of the science fiction movies that imagined what the world could look like in 2022 stars Mark Hamill, best known for playing Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars series. The world is experiencing difficult days in 2022 as it faces an alien invasion. In order to stop it, Hamill’s hero Michael travels back in time to 1992, only to learn that the aliens were already on Earth by then and managed to infiltrate the government. Even though the movie doesn’t have as high a production value as other sci-fi stories due to its low budget, the story manages to capture the audience’s imagination and Mark Hamill in the leading role doesn’t disappoint.

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Some fans of the movie believe that if it had a higher budget, it could have been as good as The Terminator(1984), which is one of the greatest compliments a sci-fi movie about time travel can get. Whatever the case, the current world has no time travel technology and as far as the public is concerned, no alien invasion is going on either.

3/5 No Escape (1994)

Like multiple movies, No Escape suggests what prisons could be like in the future. In this case, the movie didn’t hit the mark and reality stayed very civil, in comparison to what’s happening in the story. However, the inaccuracies aside, No Escape is an enjoyable action piece about a man who ends up on a prison island and has to fight for survival. It also functions as a B-list fast-paced story in which several familiar faces make an appearance.

The movie stars Ray Liotta and other known actors who play in it are Lance Henriksen and Kevin Dillon. The movie doesn’t spare the characters, making it interesting to see what will happen to them next. So even though the prisons in the movie don’t look like those in today’s world, it doesn’t take away the movie’s charm, at least not for the fans of the action genre.

2/5 The Purge (2013)

When a horror movie has an original idea or does well at the box office (sometimes both), it makes sense that multiple sequels follow. However, the first The Purge remains one of the best installments in the series. It shows that in the USA in 2022, all crimes are allowed for one 12-hour window per year, which makes it easy to keep the criminality rate low for the rest of the year. The downside is that for these twelve hours, everybody is on their own and no one will help them if criminals go after them. That makes for an intense atmosphere since sometimes it’s people in horror movies who can do the biggest damage, not monsters or aliens.

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The movie suggests that the Purge was established after an economic collapse. Considering the current economic crisis, the movie has some similarities to reality. Fortunately, the main concept remains in the realm of fiction. The Purge also manages to make the audience think, ask themselves how they would react if they could commit any crime once a year, and know their deeds will go unpunished.

1/5 Hell Baby (2013)

Some older movies try to come up with a realistic future that could happen… and then there’s Hell Baby. The movie is a horror comedy and just like its genre would suggest, it doesn’t take itself seriously. The main heroes are Vanessa and Ben, a couple that’s expecting their twin children, and moves to a house in New Orleans that appears to be haunted.

If the viewers manage to align with the movie’s humor, they can enjoy Hell Baby. However, many of the audience members hated the movie for the same reason, judging by its below-average online ratings. Whatever the case, Hell Baby makes no pretense at realism, so the movie’s version of 2022 comes across as something taken out of a twisted version of the world. As a result, it’s unlikely the movie will serve as documentary material for 2022 world events in the future.

More: The Most Influential Sci-Fi Films (That Are More Than 50 Years Old)

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