The novel, A Brave New World, and the movie, Collateral Beauty, examine the dystopian element of a community that has removed all the bad emotions prevalent in society in hopes of creating an ideal world and how the unintended consequences can end up decreasing the quality of life because humans need the negative elements to truly enjoy the brilliance of passion, hope, and love. The primary component of the World State is the idea that pain does not exist anymore. No ones even knows the concept of being hurt in the World State. John questions this, asking “Isn’t there something to living dangerously?” John believes that the only life worth living is one where everyone can feel as they truly do. By giving the readers the perspective of John, Huxley is challenging the common thought that removing all the bad from life will make it better. He’s daring the readers to accept all that happens because it’s what makes life worth living. Knowing that there are good times makes the bad times bearable. And having bad times makes the good times meaningful. He is showing them that accepting life, just as it comes, is beautiful. Through John, Huxley is proving that one needs pain and suffering to live. It’s what makes it all worth it. In Collateral Beauty, Howard lost his daughter. It has caused him such hurt that he not only turned from the bad like in A Brave New World, but from the beauty as well. It reminds him to much of what he lost. He was running from the pain and therefore, running from life. All of it. When personification Love comes, asking for him to trust her, he says “I did trust...and you betrayed me! I saw you...in her eyes...felt it when she called me daddy...you broke my heart.” He does not understand that “[love is] the darkness and the light, the sunshine and the storm...Don’t try to live without [love].” Frankel and Loeb highlight that Howard lost the most essential part of being human by trying to remove the hurt from his life. When one runs from pain, they are really running everything. Life is messy and pain and love are intertwined; they can not remove each other. Just because someone’s was hurt, they still need it in their lives. It’s what makes everyone human. Living when you have something, or everything, to lose makes living worth it. Just as in Brave New World, the authors use a main character to point out the beauty in the pain.
The 1931 novel, A Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, and the 2010 novel, Matched by Ally Condie, both explore the concept of a dystopian society in which the government makes all the choices for their citizens and how when citizens are not forced to make choices on a day to day basis, their ability to do so diminishes. In World State citizens lives are planned out. They choose what job someone has, where someone lives, and even when someone dies. Citizens have no choices to make thanks to constant drug usage and the fact that people “adore the technologies that undo their capacities to think.” Some decisions are really hard to make. And citizens in the World State want their lives to be easy even if it means sacrificing their free will. The government doesn’t mind controlling the everyday choices of the citizens; all it does is make it easier for them to be controlled. The population does not know how to deal with new experiences and looks to the government for an explanation instead of devoting their times to thinking about it. When John whips himself at the lighthouse, the people link it to sex. This is because they do not have the capability to think for themselves and see that this is a human in pain, not a savage act of love. The citizens of the World State link the pain with sex because this is what they have been taught and do not even to think otherwise. Similar to A Brave New World, the society in Matched decides everything for its citizens. They are told where to work, when you die, and how you love. Only after the seemingly perfect system malfunctions does Cassia state “It is one thing to make a choice and it is another thing to never have the chance.” Before Cassia ever had to make choices, her life seemed easy, if not boring. Now she’s discovering that her perfect world may not be so perfect. The illusion that the government is trying to make their lives easier is a lie, covering up the fact that they are tricking their citizens into becoming manipulable puppets. Those who have the choices made for them are happy because it’s all they know. They don’t know the freedom they could have or the power they would wield. Instead, the allow the society to run their lives. They are happy now but would they be happy if they knew they had a choice? But because of the May they have been raised, they will never question it. For them, there is no choice between thinking for themselves or allowing the government to make their lives easier. There is simply only living.
The novel “A Brave New World” and the 2018 film “Ready Player One” both examine what happens when a population is disengaged by means that allow themselves to leave the less favorable factors of reality behind and how the public leaving reality behind is a double edged sword. Soma is a key component to life in World State and yet it creates “a quite impenetrable wall between the actual universe and their minds.” Citizens exist in a doped up state of being, questioning nothing about the reality of their world. The author of BNW, Huxley, is calling attention to the issue that avoiding reality only makes it harder to challenge the negative issues of society and the government knows this. Not wanting moral riots on their hands, they esured that their motives and methods would not be questioned by providing alternate realities: soma in BNW and the OASIS in RP1. These are simply “elaborate contraption[s] for deceiving...to live in a world that didn’t exist” and Huxley and Cline want their audience to realize that to live in something that doesn’t really exist, no matter how “terrifying and painful reality can be,” is no kind of life. They warn of becoming so subdued by imaginary happiness, that one may sacrifice and “[lose] who you are.” Their message is rather simple: Be present in your life, it’s the only one you have. Don’t waste it by chasing imaginary things and sacrifice reality for it.