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Libertarian Movies

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					                                 Libertarian Movies

These are movies that present a libertarian viewpoint, or they show the dangers of an
authoritarian government. Some are well-known, others are not.


Brazil (1985)- Genre: Sci-Fi, Comedy. Starring Jonathan Pryce, Robert De Niro.
In a futuristic world full of convoluted and inefficient bureaucracy, Sam Lowry (Pryce) is
a civil servant who stumbles across a mistake in one of the numerous papers that crosses
his desk. The mistake leads to the arrest of an innocent man, shoe repairman Harry
Buttle, whose name is similar to the real “criminal” Harry Tuttle (De Niro). His crime?
Doing house repairs without a permit! As Lowry tries to fix the mistake, he is dragged
deeper into the bureaucracy, eventually finding himself labeled a criminal by the state. A
classic for anybody fed up with the DMV or any other bureaucracy.
Best bureaucratic quote: Arresting officer- “This is your receipt for your husband…..
and this is my receipt for your receipt.”

The Castle (1997)- Genre: Comedy. Starring Michael Caton, Anne Tenney.
A man’s home is his castle. At least that is the opinion of Darryl Kerrigan (Caton) and his
family, who live close to the Melbourne airport. That’s never been a problem, until the
airport wants to expand onto his land. Finding out that his home is to be “compulsorily
acquired,” Darryl decides to fight back, no matter how hopeless it seems. A great movie
about liberty and the right to private property.
Best libertarian quote: Lawyer-“There is an ironclad agreement between federal, state,
and local governments and the Airports Commission.”
Darryl Kerrigan-“Well, where’s the agreement with Darryl Kerrigan?”

Braveheart (1995)- Genre: Drama, Action. Starring Mel Gibson, Patrick McGoohan.
William Wallace (Gibson) leads his ragtag army against the English crown in their quest
for independence for Scotland. Don’t believe I really need to go any farther.
Best libertarian quote: William Wallace- “FREEEEDOMMMMMM!!!”

Fahrenheit 451 (1966)- Genre: Drama. Starring Oskar Werner, Julie Christie.
No, not that propaganda piece put out by Michael Moore. This movie tells the story of a
future world where books are banned and burned. Why? In order to keep the populace
from thinking for themselves and therefore totally subject to the governments’ will.
Best libertarian quote: Guy- Do you remember what you asked me the other day, if I ever
read the books I burned?
Clarisse- Um hmm.
Guy- Last night I read one.

The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)- Genre: Western. Starring Clint Eastwood.
Josey Wales (Eastwood) is a peaceful Missouri farmer, until his family is killed by Union
raiders. He refuses to surrender at the end of the war, choosing instead to join with a
group of outcasts, also victims of the Union government, like his Indian friend Lone
Watie. But the soldiers refuse to leave him alone. Great movie about state, society, war,
and peace.
Best libertarian quote: Josey- “Governments don’t live together. People live together. I’m
saying that men can live together without butchering one another.”

Shenandoah (1965)- Genre: Drama, War. Starring Jimmy Stewart, Patrick Wayne.
A favorite among all libertarians for its anti-war theme, this movie portrays Virginia
farmer Charlie Anderson (Stewart), a widower during the War Between the States.
Anderson refuses to join either side during the war, trying instead to run his farm. Not
until one of his sons is wrongly captured does he take up arms, because “now it concerns
him.”
Best libertarian quote: Lt. Johnson- “Virginia need all of her sons, Mr. Anderson.”
Charlie Anderson- “That might be so, Johnson. But these are my sons. They don’t belong
to the state. We never asked anything of the state and never expected anything.”

Star Wars series (1977-till who knows when)- Genre: Sci-Fi. Starring Mark Hamill,
Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher.
A galactic telling of ancient Rome. But with androids, clones, light sabers, and an eight-
foot hairy monkey thrown in. The movie follows the fall of the Old Republic into the evil
Galactic Empire, whose imperialist ambitions threaten to destroy freedom in the galaxy.
A bold group of freedom fighters lead a rebellion against the Empire. Classic film
criticizing large government.
Best libertarian quote: Yoda- “A Jedi uses the Force for knowledge and defense. Never
for attack.” (Bet ya didn’t know Yoda was a libertarian, did ya?)

Ghost Busters- (1984) Genre: Sci-Fi, Comedy. Starring Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd.
Three paranormal researchers are out of a job when their university department is
eliminated in a budget cut. They are forced to become self-supporting by offering their
services as ghost exterminators commercially. Everything actually goes well until a
government bureaucrat from the EPA tries to shut them down for not having proper
permits. A hilarious film showing how government interference can hurt businesses, as
well as open an inter-dimensional portal that can destroy all of humankind.
Best bureaucratic quote- EPA Agent, after shutting down the ghost containment unit,
causing a huge explosion and releasing hordes of ghosts-“These men are in direct
violation of the Environmental Protection Act! And this explosion is a direct result of it!

Minority Report (2002) Genre: Sci-Fi, Action. Starring Tom Cruise, Colin Ferrell.
A great movie exploring the aspects of pre-destination vs. free will. In the future,
Washington, D.C. is void of murder. Due to three “pre-cogs,” who can see the future, and
the Department of Pre-Crime, potential murders are arrested before they commit the
murder. But can people change their future? If they know they are going to commit a
crime, do they have a choice? This movie explores the ultimate trade-off of liberty for
security.
Best libertarian quote: Pre-cog- “You can choose…..”
Harry’s War (1981) Genre: Comedy. Starring Edward Herrmann.
Harry Johnson’s (Herrmann) aunt dies of a heart attack while fighting the IRS. Harry
blames her death on the IRS, and takes up her battle. The government responds to his
protest by laying siege to his home, surrounding it with tanks, declaring his children as
hostages, (remember, this was pre-Ruby Ridge and pre-Waco).
Best libertarian quote: Harry- “Hitler would have loved the IRS.”

The Godfather Trilogy (1972) Genre: Drama, CrimeStarring Marlon Brando, Al Pacino.
What happens when you outlaw drugs, gambling, and other victimless crimes? You get
corrupt politicians, corrupt cops, murder, organized crime, gang warfare, and great
gangster movies.
Best libertarian quote: Michael Corleone- “All my life, I kept trying to go up in society.
Where everything higher up is legal. But the higher I go, the crookeder it becomes.
Where the hell does it end?”

Antz (1998) Genre: Comedy. Starring Woody Allen, Sylvester Stallone.
Z, a worker ant, tries to break free from his totalitarian society in order to meet the
princess. After switching with a soldier ant, he ends up becoming a hero and must work
to foil a plan by the ant general to exterminate the worker population and institute
regimentation of the colony. Strong themes of individuality, anti-conscription, anti-
fascist, and anti-communism are throughout the movie. Or maybe we’re just reading too
much into it. ;)
Best libertarian quote: Z- “Mindless zombies capitulating to an oppressive system.”
Princess- “Wanna dance?”
Z- “ABSOLUTLY!”

				
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