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The Trap: What Happened to Our Dream of Freedom? (2007)

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The Trap is a series of three films by Bafta-winning producer Adam Curtis (The Century of the Self, The Power of Nightmares) that explains the origins of our contemporary, narrow idea of freedom. It shows how a simplistic model of human beings as self-seeking, almost robotic, creatures led to today's idea of freedom. In the first episode, Curtis examines the rise of game theory during the Cold War and the way in which its mathematical models of human behavior filtered into economic thought.

Filmmaker Adam Curtis has also directed:

The Century of Self (2002), The Power of Nightmares (2004), All Watched Over by Machines of Love and Grace (2011).


Part 2: The Lonely Robot
Adam Curtis continues his series of films explaining the origins of our contemporary, narrow and limited idea of freedom. This episode tells the story of how, in the 1990s, politicians from both right and left tried to apply an idea of freedom modeled on the freedom of the market to all other areas of society. Behind it was a scientific model of ourselves as simplified robots, rational calculating beings whose behavior and even feelings could be predicted by numbers. Out of this came today's systems of management - from performance targets to the new categories of mental disorder, and reading the genetic codes buried inside us.

Part 3: We Will Force You To Be Free
The final program focuses on the concepts of positive and negative liberty introduced in the 1950s by Isaiah Berlin.

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Films For Action is a library for people who want to change the world.

 

Our mission is to provide citizens with the knowledge and perspectives essential to creating a more beautiful, just, sustainable, and democratic society.

Films For Action was founded in 2006 by a few friends in Lawrence, Kansas, after realizing how essential healthy media is to a healthy democracy.

Over the last 15 years, we've reviewed and curated over 1,000 free documentaries and 4,000 short films, plus over 150 pay-per-view documentaries, spanning 34 topics related to changing the world.

During this time we've been able to reach tens of millions of people - not by owning a TV network or spending truckloads of cash on advertising, but because millions of awesome people keep sharing 'films for action' with their friends on social media - in particular, our 850,000 supporters on Facebook and 70,000 site members. 

One of the coolest things is, thanks to our patrons, our library is ad-free and 100% supported by member donations, while 99% of our library is free to access and always will be. The pay-per-view films on our site, of course, help support the filmmakers, and 90-100% of the revenue for PPV films hosted by us goes to the filmmakers. 

To thank our $5/mo patrons, we partner with filmmakers and distributors to provide free access to a growing number of films that are normally pay-per-view. With just 20 highly curated films at the moment, it's basically a very, very tiny Netflix for world changers, but its main function is to support the library as a whole.

If you'd like to know more, want to help out, or you're a filmmaker looking to collaborate, feel free to get in touch!

Cheers,  Tim Hjersted