Essay on Portrayals of John Anderton

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Portrayals of John Anderton


Imagine a world in which the thought of murder is a thing of the past; a world that has successfully abolished the system of jails and fines with the aid of gifted individuals that can predict the future (Dick 72). Such a crime free world exists in Philip K. Dick’s famous short story, The Minority Report. Using the adaptation made by screenwriters, Scott Frank and Jon Cohen, DreamWorks was able to release the film version of Dick’s short story in 2002. Furthermore, this futuristic age film was directed by the famous director, Stephen Spielberg. The main focus of the short story and film surrounds the lead character John Anderton and his efforts to understand the minority report. In comparing
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He does not know to whom to turn, and feels like everybody and anybody is out to bring him down. His wife, Lisa, and Ed Witwer, the young man brought in to replace him when he retires, are two of the main individuals he suspects as his conspirators. Furthermore, unknowing to Anderton, his so-called victim and the one behind the conspiracy, Kaplan, sends one of his men, Tod Fleming, to help Anderton escape his predicament. This was Kaplan's way to bring Anderton and his Precrime unit under the Army’s control. In his quest to find the minority report, the document that is to prove his innocence and clear his name, he discovers the truth about his true “friends” and “enemies”. This discovery also enables him to prevent the army from obtaining control of domestic policing in the nation (Landrith). The story concludes after Anderton fulfills the prediction made by the precogs and kills Kaplan, he is then punished for his crime by being sent into exile to a far away region in the galaxy.

Who is John Anderton? In the Philip K. Dick’s short story he is the founder and commissioner of the policing unit, Precrime. He is described as “bald, fat and old”, and is in his mid-fifties. One of the successes of the adaptation of the character of Anderton onto the big screen is that the movie portrays Anderton as a younger and more active man than in the short story. Appealing to the mass audience of…