Equilibrium

Question: The movie's whole point is that emotions have been stamped out, correct? So why does Taye Diggs smile almost constantly and shows obvious glee, and the Vice Councilor pounds the table in rage. Wouldn't the elite of the government be the ideal?

Answer: Because of their display of emotions it is clear that the elite are not taking their Prozium. If the idea of the emotionless society worked, then yes the elite should be taking their Prozium. However, this society obviously doesn't work and instead of being the solution to all man's problems, Prozium have just become a way of subduing the masses while the elite are free to do as they please.

Andreas[DK]

Answer: I am sure Brandt is dosing every day. He even talks about getting his dose adjusted at the beginning of his partnership with Preston, stating: "I am a wary person, cautious by nature, always expecting the worst." And yet he definitely does seem to display anger and he smiles throughout the movie. In my opinion, the only member of the elite that is NOT taking the Proseum is "Father" since he admits as much to Preston at the very end of the movie, and he eradicated due process for offenders: He is a psychopath and so doesn't need Proseum to suppress emotions he doesn't have. Yet warning Preston at the end that he is "treading on his dreams," shows his narcissism. Maybe Brandt's "emotions" are merely acting, as he was from the start part of "Father's" plan to set Preston up. Therefore, he isn't really "feeling" at all: merely acting. One can act as though one is angry or sad or happy without actually feeling anything at all. I am sure that Brandt never came off his interval.

Question: Right before the fight between Preston and DuPont, DuPont re-quotes Sean Bean "you tread on my dreams." How did he know that quote, and why did he know it would mean anything to Preston?

Answer: Since Preston is the one who discovered Partridge's sense-offense and executed him, he was probably required to give a report of how it went down and mentioned Partridge's last words, which one would expect would make its way to DuPont.

Phaneron Premium member

Answer: "Father" is a very human psychopath in my opinion. I don't believe he was ever dosing. Therefore, he was probably already familiar with Yeats. Just like his "office" at the end is filled with illegal artwork, which if he didn't "feel" would be completely unnecessary. He tells Preston at the end that he "feels," and that's true. It's just that he "feels" only as a psychopath can feel. And, since he was setting Preston up from the very beginning, he also probably knew exactly what book Partridge had been reading when Preston shot him. And he used that phrase right before his fight with Preston, why? Perhaps to attempt to throw him off his game by reminding him that he had killed his partner (something that he guessed - correctly - about which Preston felt incredible sadness and guilt).

Question: The speeches that "Father" gives are emotional, in that they are intended to instill emotion in the listener. I understand that Father and presumably quite a few others of the head council are not taking the Prozium, but is there a reason they are still giving these rousing speeches to the masses that are supposedly devoid of emotion? Am I just missing some of the story?

Gary O'Reilly

Chosen answer: As I see it, the point of the speeches is not to evoke emotions in the listeners, but rather to show what emotions such as anger and jealousy lead to in the course of human history. So they use historic "evidence" to justify their actions (such as killing sense offenders) and to show what emotions can lead to.

Andreas[DK]

Question: If there are no emotions, how do they fall in love? Preston shows signs with his wife while on the drug.

Answer: I think in Libria marriages only exist to keep the human species going. There is no "love" per se. It was Viviana Preston who really showed emotion (because she was not dosing) during the scenes that we see through Preston's memories. I believe Preston attacked the men who burst into their apartment out of a sense of preserving his family unit, nor necessarily out of a sense of loving his wife. His inaction after he found out she was a sense offender (and not returning her kiss before she was dragged off him) and the fact that he coldly attended her incineration without a single emotion visible on his face show that he probably didn't feel grief at the time at all. On the other hand, Preston WAS set up because "Father" was looking for a man who had "the capacity to feel, without yet knowing it," (even with the Proseum) and so some minor displays of emotions towards his wife and children would make sense.

Question: After Preston kills DuPont, there is no blood or wound on his neck. Only moments later, he goes to destroy the Father broadcasting room, and suddenly there is a cut on his neck with blood on his collar. Is this a mistake, or is it implied that he fought more and got injured between DuPont's office and the broadcast room?

Quantom X Premium member

Chosen answer: This is actually addressed in the DVD director's commentary. The wound was caused by a bullet grazing Preston's neck during his gun duel with DuPont. Due to adrenaline and shock however, it didn't begin to bleed until after Preston had killed DuPont and his body began to relax. The relative unlikelihood of this is moot since it is technically possible. So the scene in the broadcast room takes place immediately after Preston kills DuPont. Interestingly, it was Christian Bale's idea to add the wound because he thought it would make Preston seem too superhuman if he escaped the previous battles completely unharmed.

Phixius Premium member

Question: What did Preston do with the dog? We see that he put it back in the car, but he obviously wasn't going to just walk into his apartment with "contraband". He couldn't just let it go, because the dog wouldn't leave when he tried to before.

Answer: At the end of the film, after Preston kills 'Father' and the explosives are detonated, we see Preston's kids. His son is at school and his daughter is playing with the puppy (she's letting it lick her hand). I assumed that he'd wrapped it up in his coat he used as a bed for it and simply hurried up the stairs.

Question: Libria does have technology and computer abilities. This is evident with the screens showing Father, the vehicles, and the TV station in a later scene. But when Preston was asking about the book that he thought Partridge had archived, the man behind the desk has a gigantic book to have to flip through to find it. If they do have and use technology, why would they use a book for archiving items like that when a computer would make it SO much easier?

Quantom X Premium member

Chosen answer: Because the information is very important to them, they could have decided against having it all on a computer system which could theoretically break down in the event of a power cut/surge or hacker sabotage, while a book cannot lose information unless physically destroyed.

Purple_Girl

Question: If the law enforcers are all taking their drugs, why, in the gun battles, are all of the soldiers ducking down and showing signs of fear?

Answer: Feeling actual fear and being trained to not deliberately stand in the line of fire are different things. The soldiers are acting out of self preservation, not fear.

Gary O'Reilly

Question: When Preston goes into Father's office to face off against Brandt and DuPont, he is surrounded by several guys in gray suits with swords. Just before Preston cuts them down with little effort, the one directly in front of him growls and Preston smirks. The guy that growls... who is he? I could swear I have seen him in a movie or something before, but I can't place where. I know I have seen his face before. Who is he and what has he played in?

Quantom X Premium member

Chosen answer: He is a stuntman named Lucas Wolf. His filmography can be found here: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1705173/.

LorgSkyegon

Question: How do the devices Preston uses to shoot guns and magazines from his coat sleeves work? Do they actually exist in real life?

Answer: Wrist holsters do exist for smaller pistols, although I don't know of any current devices that actually bring the weapon forward into the hand. However, somewhat bizarrely, a toy gun back in about 1960 did come with a wrist holster that had this feature - it was referred to as using a "wrist-flick" action. Precisely how Preston's more advanced devices work isn't clear - it most probably involves some specific muscle contraction, which the device can 'read' to bring the gun into play or retract it. The reloading probably has some sort of signal sent from the gun to the device (using something along the lines of today's Bluetooth system), to inform it that a reload is necessary - again, a specific muscle movement (i.e. that required to put the gun into a position where the reload can occur) could be used to trigger the event.

Tailkinker Premium member

Question: Why would they need to authenticate the Mona Lisa painting at the beginning? Wouldn't a replica yield the same punishment for whomever is in possession of it?

Phaneron Premium member

Answer: They need to know they got the real one because that is the one that is so revered and protected. Not a replica.

lionhead

Answer: I'm not sure who "they" refers to, so I'm giving a general answer. They need to ascertain the monetary value of the painting in order to know how to proceed. Obviously, an authentic painting (perhaps worth millions of dollars) has a much greater value (selling price) than a fake painting (which could be produced at a small fraction of the cost plus would not hold the same cultural or historical significance). The "punishment" (sentence) that could be imposed may vary with jurisdiction, type of sentencing system, monetary value, and the offender's prior criminal record (if any). Although it may be possible somewhere for the replica to carry the same punishment that is attached to the authentic painting, the extreme difference in value between the two paintings is likely to separate them into different classifications or grades of the offense (felony/misdemeanor or grand/ petit larceny). In general, the grand theft of an authentic painting worth millions carries a heavier sentence.

KeyZOid

The plot of this film is that all emotions have been outlawed, as are anything that can stir up emotions (art, literature, music, etc.) Anyone that violates this law is put to death. So someone that has a replica of the Mona Lisa would be executed just the same as someone that has the real thing. Monetary value doesn't factor into the equation, because the police force in the film incinerates all contraband.

Phaneron Premium member

Thanks for explaining why my general answer does not apply and is thereby "dead wrong." I know I saw "Equilibrium" but I didn't remember anything about it; it obviously didn't have a lasting impression on me. I should have at least looked it up before giving a general answer. Now I am wondering what the specific answer is... Good question.

KeyZOid

Factual error: When they first pick up the Mona Lisa, they show the back. There you can see a canvas sheet over a wooden framework. However, the Mona Lisa is painted directly onto wood, no canvas at all. The scan they run even says it's painted onto wood, despite visual evidence to the contrary. (00:06:35)

stupidonlinename

More mistakes in Equilibrium

Mary: Let me ask you something. Why are you alive?
John Preston: I'm alive... I live... To safeguard the continuity of this great society. To serve Libria.
Mary: It's circular. You exist to continue your existence. What's the point?
John Preston: What's the point of your existence?
Mary: To feel. 'Cause you've never done it, you can never know it. But it's as vital as breath. And without it, without love, without anger, without sorrow, breath is just a clock... Ticking.

More quotes from Equilibrium

Trivia: The word 'tetragrammatron' has some very interesting origins which render the film either profound or pretentious, depending on your point of view. See http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/A3477909 for a full explanation.

More trivia for Equilibrium

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