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12 Monkeys (1995)

This week we are joined by Barry Lam (Professor of Philosophy at Vassar College and host of HiPhi Nation) to discuss Terry Gilliam’s manic time travel science fiction masterpiece, 12 Monkeys! We explore how the film manifests the philosopher David Lewis’s theory of time travel, while also depicting the madness of foreknowledge and the futility of attempting to change what’s already happened. We discuss the possibility of closed causal loops, the challenges of political activism, pandemic tie-ins, and how the film uses Brad Pitt as a spokesperson for Gen-X dissatisfaction (something he would more famously go on to embody in Fight Club a few years later). So climb aboard this nightmare train to madness and keep an eye out for hamsters!

OK, OK, buy a lot of stuff, you’re a good citizen. But if you don’t buy a lot of stuff, what are you then? What? You’re mentally ill!

Jeffrey Goines



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