aastey recommendations: 5 timeless classics that critique consumerism

hey tribe!

it’s movie recommendations time. if you have been reading our blogs, you know we talk a lot about the pitfalls of fast fashion.

the fast fashion industry, with its revolving styles and five-minute trends, pushes us into the trap of consumerism. Aja Barber in her book Consumed explains that people get attracted to fast fashion because we think it will help fill the gaps that society makes us believe we have in our lives.

so, we thought it would be perfect to look out for some movies that effectively critique consumerism. here are our top five picks:

fight club (1999)

if you haven’t seen this masterpiece yet, you are missing a whole lot. this cult classic is just the perfect representation of the 1990s America overwhelmed with consumerism. the movie depicts the disconnection and disassociation that the youth of the country feel under the disguised façade of immaculate magazine catalogues.

favourite quote-“Advertising has us chasing cars and clothes, working jobs we hate so we can buy shit we don’t need.”- Tyler Durden

they live (1988)

another cult classic. another striking commentary on how media is influencing us to consume without reason. the movie follows a group of people who have discovered that the newspapers and television programs carry hidden messages being transmitted by aliens to secretly control the human race. well, the analogy is very clear there.

favourite quote-“we are focused only on our own gain. please understand. they are safe as long as they are discovered. that is their primary method of survival. keep us asleep, keep us selfish, keep us sedated.” – Bearded Man

American Psycho (2000)

set in the 80s, American psycho follows Patrick Bateman (Christian bale), a narcissist and vain investment banker. Bateman represents soulless consumerism someone who just buys and owns material things but becomes more and more disconnected from feelings and emotions.

Another hard-hitting tale of American consumerism producing apathy, void, and an endless loop of wanting things that we don’t need.

favourite quote- “I feel lethal, on the verge of frenzy. I think my mask of sanity is about to slip.”- Patrick Bateman

Dawn of the dead (1978)

dawn of the dead is another uncompromising critique of the consumerist culture as the movie compares the undead zombies to the never-ending need for consumption. if you love the horror genre, this is just simply not a movie to miss.

favourite quote- “When there’s no more room in hell, the dead will walk the earth.”

network (1976)

the oldest and yet still one of the most relevant takes on the power of media to influence and shape perceptions, this movie will try to stir you into your senses. as we tackle a world that’s becoming more divided, this movie attempts to uncover the invisible forces behind the screen that controls everything.

favourite quote- “we no longer live in a world of nations and ideologies…. the world is a college of corporations, inexorably determined by the immutable bylaws of business. the world is a business, Mr. Beale.” Arthur Jensen

that was all from our side. hope you enjoy your weekend with some of these timeless classics.

until next time. live aastey.