10 Movies That Predicted the Future

BOSTON (TheStreet) -- New York has yet to be destroyed by a giant marshmallow man. There has never been an attempt to rob either Fort Knox or the money room at the Bellagio. Neither dogs nor babies can talk and there isn't much concern of a zombie apocalypse happening any time soon.

Movies are often at their best when they offer an escape from reality, with far-fetched plots that defy rational expectations and the rules of physics.

Every once in a while, however, what you see on the silver screen can hold a mirror to modern life years later. Technology, politics and even mundane aspects of daily existence in the film world can turn out to be eerily predictive.

Ten of the many movies that accurately nailed future predictions include:

Americathon

Americathon (1979)

The debt crisis and the risk of the U.S. losing its top-notch bond rating was foreseen back in 1979 in this often overlooked comedy, which had an ensemble cast that included John Ritter, Harvey Korman, Meat Loaf, Tommy Lasorda, Jay Leno and Elvis Costello (sneering his way through I Don't Want to Go to Chelsea and Crawling to the U.S.A.).

Americathon is one of those cult movies that hasn't been properly re-released since the days of VHS tapes. Amazingly, the rather dumb movie -- about a last-ditch telethon held to bail out the bankrupt country before it defaults back to Native American ownership -- was spot-on with many of its over-the-top (at the time) plot points.

Among them:

  • The idea that the U.S. could be on the verge of bankruptcy, with its currency devalued beyond repair and lethally in debt to other nations.
  • The declining state of U.S. oil production.
  • That China would become a global economic force by moving toward capitalism following the post-Cold War fall of the USSR.
  • That a small, under-the-radar sneaker company, Nike (Stock Quote: NKE), would become an international conglomerate. An overstatement on the movie's part, perhaps, but still a valiant guess at how big the company would become.