Metaphorical movie myopia


Before entering a showing of the film Elysium, movie patrons are asked to secure Elysium Cinematic Health Care Insurance Policy. The terms and conditions of such policy are provided below. Anyone entering Elysium without securing such film insurance is still universally eligible to watch the film; however, such patron thereby waives any claims related to such viewing and any warnings and disclosures provided by this film insurance policy.

Elysium Cinematic Health Care Insurance Policy

Elysium offers a film about universal health insurance coverage in the guise of a science fiction narrative for all full-time patrons (those watching 1.49 hours per screening). Elysium may offer additional subject matter at a mental cost to patrons.

Patrons may elect to pay additional cost for film coverage for their spouse and/or dependents. Patrons watching multiple times per week are eligible to purchase snack bar items at full cost.

Jodie Foster and Matt Damon in Elysium.
Photo by Kimberley French, Columbia TriStar Marketing Group, Inc.

DEFINITIONS

The “Earth” is a trashed planet depicted in the year 2154 where humans struggle to survive in crowded conditions, are ruled by insensitive robot overlords, are subjected to roving thugs and underworld drug lords, and work in menial jobs servicing a distant orbiting space station where the rich live in luxury and which is depicted as a veritable paradise.

The term “Elysium” is a provider of cinematic entertainment consisting of actors Matt Damon, Jodie Foster, William Fitchner, Sharlto Copley, Diego Luna and other acting participants, and directed by Neill Blomkamp; it is also the name of the opulent orbiting space station.

A “magical cure-all health care technology” is a brain-scanner-like contraption included in every home on Elysium whereby a person simply lies down and it diagnoses and cures whatever ails that person in seconds — even a pesky pimple. This also represents the fantasy, ideal medical and health care that we all seem to wish we had available to us today by simply flipping a switch — no doctors, no human touch, no imperfections, no plastic surgery, no fuss, no muss.

The term “mental data storage” is a sci-fi plot element in Elysium whereby chips are implanted in human brains that can store computer data for retrieval; however, that retrieval can sometime kill the human whose brain contains the info, or not, depending on the narrative conditions that would further the plot, such as when a character has the codes implanted in his brain that instructs the Elysium Space Station and its robot minions to reboot and thus allow an alternative health care exchange to be constructed to provide care to the masses.

An “Elysium overlord” is a character that is assigned to defend the Elysium health care system and the Elysium opulent lifestyle even though such defense may not be necessary

INELIGIBLE CINEMATIC DEPENDENTS

The following conceptual dependents to the universal health care Elysium theme are not eligible for full cinematic coverage in Elysium (they are not fully developed enough to be covered with any depth):

• illegal immigration, typified by Earthbound humans seeking, via rogue spaceships, entrance to Elysium and all the free wonders (i.e. magical cure-all health care technology) it provides; and

• racial inequality, typified by the racial makeup of Earthbound humans versus those living on Elysium; and

• 1 percenter indifference, typified by the residents of Elysium who, lulled by over-the-top pampering and country house mansion living, don’t give a whit about their Earthbound brethren.

UNIVERSAL COVERAGE

For those choosing to witness Elysium, the following constitutes the characterization of universal health care coverage under this insurance policy:

• it is somehow (amazingly!) affordable to all humans on Earth as well as those residing on the Elysium Space Station, even if everyone does not seem to know this or behave as if they know this; and

• it is ultimately available to any and all humans no matter where they reside; and

• once it becomes available, there are no mechanisms to withdraw access to coverage and the magical cure-all technology it provides; and

• once it becomes available, it magically will not need massive amounts of energy or resources to provide its magical cure-all health care technology to everyone no matter what their illness or ability to pay; and

• the magical cure-all health care technology will magically appear to those that it somehow senses are in need of such care or who, in an instant, become eligible for such care; and

• it can magically cure any and all ailments in seconds, except for some unknown reason full-body radiation from an accidental exposure at a robot assembly factory; and

• those who have access to such magical cure-all health care technology (the 1 percenters) will try and keep it for themselves, even though it could be universally provided to all (the 99 percenters) at no cost or resource expenditure; and

• if the 1 percenters would just provide this magical cure-all health care technology to everyone, there would be no need for Elysium and all the fights, battles, vicious killings and dismemberments, rotating and opulent space stations, innovative robot exoskeleton attire bolted onto a would-be hero (à la the internal mental skeleton the Wolverine from the X-Men movies).

CONTINUATION COVERAGE

This Elysium Cinematic Health Care Insurance Policy shall continue even after you have left or otherwise separated from the location displaying Elysium.

However, your continuation coverage may be cut short for any of the following reasons:

• you see right through obvious metaphorical sci-fi cinematic techniques; or

• you understand even the subtlest of nuances related to the difficulties of the dispensation of health care and the trade-offs involved therein; or

• you forget Elysium within minutes after you have seen it, or any portion of it; or

• you wish you never considered viewing Elysium; or

• you wish you actually were in a state of Elysium instead of just watching Elysium.

ELIGIBILITY DATE

You are covered by this policy the moment you secure a nonrefundable movie ticket for a showing of Elysium no matter where, when or how that ticket was purchased. Please be sure to keep a receipt. Walkouts during viewing do not result in cancellation of this policy, but actually reaffirm it. View it in good health!

“Dr.” Young has been innoculating readers against bad films during his residency at The Statesman clinic, and has likewise prescribed full insurance coverage for those afflicted with politicsitis.