I was speaking with our friend Tonio about the movie Brazil the other day. I had heard of it and generally knew it was a bureaucratic dystopian nightmare, but had never watched it. It also got me thinking about a topic we’ve covered many times – libertarianism (deliberate or inadvertent) in pop culture. Perhaps there are some new entries or more obscure items we can all share to add to our lists. What are your favorite libertarian-themed movies, TV shows, and songs?

Here are some of mine:


Citizen X: HBO movie about a real-life Russian serial killer. But the serial killing is mere window dressing for a story of a man of principle, Detective Viktor Burakov (Stephen Rea) attempting to do actual police work in a system completely without principle. He gains an unlikely champion in the smarmy Col. Mikhail Fetisov (Donald Sutherland), a man who knows how to work the levers of power. I always cry at the end, not because of the outcome of the crime investigation, but because of one man’s triumph over the Goliath of the State of which he’s a part.

Changeling: period (1920’s) movie about a missing child. But the missing child is mere window dressing for a story of a woman crushed under the weight of the State and its media partners. Christine Collins (Angelina Jolie) reports her son missing. The cops obligingly provide an imposter boy to replace him, telling her it is her actual child. Insisting the boy is not her son, she is mocked, vilified in the press, and eventually sent to a psych ward for her “hysterics”. The outcome results in a brief period of accountability, but we know that never lasts.


None of the Above“, Duran Duran, The Wedding Album, 1993. Lyric sample:

I am I, myself alone
Realize I never need to use no one
When it comes down to my soul
Freedom puts my faith in none of the above


The First 48: true crime, real-time murder investigations. Learn just how much disrespect cops have for your rights and how they manipulate suspects and witnesses. The show has had many legal issues over the years, including being involved in the murder of 8-year-old Aiyana Mo’Nay Stanley-Jones. I’ve learned a lot about interrogation techniques by watching this show. Continuing lesson for everyone: NEVER TALK TO THE COPS! EVER!