“In Time” – Measuring Your Time in Currency

July 16, 2012 — Leave a comment

July 16, 2012

This weekend my wife and I stayed home to watch a movie starring Justin Timberlake – which is not something I like to admit.  However, “In Time” turned out to be quite thought-provoking and inspired me to write about it today.  To get a better idea of what I’m focusing on.. here is the trailer:

Just in case you can’t watch the video, here’s a quick summary and review from Movie Quotes and More:

The idea of the story is unique and innovative, it’s based in the future when the commodity of value is not cash but time and everyone only gets to live to the age of 25 and after that you have one year to live depending on the time credits you’ve earned.  However, the way the story is told is not as good as it should have been given the rich narrative and the movie lacks momentum with the characters not well developed enough to get a sense of who these people are…

That’s why we usually work, right?  So we can earn money to pay our bills and hopefully do some things we love.  In this movie, they took out the medium (currency) and charged you actual minutes of your life to do everything from buying your lunch to paying your rent.  They added minutes by doing anything you’d do today to make money.

Our time is limited so it makes sense it would act as a natural currency.  However, we don’t have the ability to buy additional time, so we have to use it wisely… and boy does time go by so fast!

The movie also factors in “classes” of society and shows how the rich can live forever because they can buy as much life as they want, but they can still die by everyday accidents, so they stop living adventurous lives and start living in a bubble so they won’t die prematurely.  They’re also surrounded by paranoia and bodyguards to prevent others from stealing their time.

In “Golden Handcuffs: Why Can’t I Leave My Job?“, I talk about the fear we have with leaving a well-paying job.  We sometimes sacrifice adventure, sense of purpose, and happiness because we don’t want to risk losing what we already have.  It reminded me of the problems the rich people had in the movie.

At one point in the movie, one of the rich people talks about how the need for time (the clock) is `good for no one.  She says:

Sylvia Weis: Oh, no? The clock is good for no one. The poor die and the rich don’t live. We can all live forever so long as we don’t do anything foolish. Doesn’t that scare you? That maybe you’ll never do anything foolish or courageous or anything worth a damn?

Is it the same for us? Do we risk living an adventurous life because we feel playing it safe will best preserve the time we have remaining?


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