Author Ayn Rand is a hero and prophet to many conservatives and libertarians, and her book Atlas Shrugged is considered her magnum opus. However, I suspect even the most frothing Teabagger or Ron Paul supporter will have a hard time liking the film adaptation of the first third of her book, Atlas Shrugged, Part 1, for reasons I (and you) discussed in my review.
But that doesn't mean that you can't have a good time watching Atlas Shrugged, Part 1, especially if you're watching it as a cultural/anthropological/political artifact that provides a rare insight into the mindset of those who believe that greed is good, government is bad, and the problem with America is that wealthy CEOs aren't nearly wealthy enough. On the flipside, conservatives and libertarians might need something to dull the pain of watching one of their founding documents hacked and shredded by an inexperienced producer and a first time feature director on a restrictive budget.
So in that spirit of bipartisanship, mind expansion, and self-medication, let me present the Atlas Chugged Drinking Game! It's sure to keep your mind occupied as you watch the film while your heart is being filled with disdain for the poor. To play, you'll need several bottles of your favorite alcoholic beverage, which will probably mean that you'll need to watch Atlas Shrugged, Part 1 at home. This is fortunate since the film has a distinctly made-for-TV look and feel -- perhaps by watching Atlas Shrugged, Part 1 on a TV, it will appear to be a slightly ambitious miniseries instead of a vastly underachieving film.
The rules of Atlas Chugged, as with most drinking games, are simple.
Someone asks "Who is John Galt?" (of course)
Someone sneers about "people in Washington."
Henry Reardon looks over the factory floor of Reardon Metal from his office window, yet you see no factory workers (since Henry, like any great "producer", has created his fortune singlehandedly without the effort and expertise of others).
The first time a character in a new scene says "Reardon Metal".
You find yourself wondering, "Hey, if this story is supposed to be taking place in an economic post apocalypse that has upended and destroyed the lives of billions of people, how come we hardly ever see any of them?"
When you see a poor person. (Twice if you feel pity for him/her.)
John Galt (a shadowy and potentially threatening stranger) walks up to a CEO/executive in the dark, asks them their name, and they dutifully respond.
Someone is concerned about CEOs/executives disappearing.
Henry and his wife talk negatively about having sex.
Henry's wife says something contemptuously.
Henry is cold and uncaring towards his wife. (Twice if Henry is even mildly considerate towards his wife.)
A wealthy character implies that they're rich and successful solely through their own hard work, without the help of talented employees or nepotism (despite the fact that the railroad Dagny and James Taggart run has been in their family for generations, no doubt making their family fabulously wealthy).
Finish your drink when a character implies that helping people is stupid.
A character drinks in a scene (since the book was released in 1957, characters drink a lot).
Someone talks about "equality" as if it had air quotes around it.
The film's hatred of the poor makes your skin call.
Someone makes a promise about Reardon metal.
Henry and Dagny, arguably the two coldest characters in the film, really seem to be hitting it off.
Dagny and Henry travel to a different state, and it pretty much looks like where they were before.
Someone mentions the State Science Institute.
Someone says "dog eat dog."
Someone insists that Reardon metal is perfectly safe.
Someone shows genuine affection for someone.
This list was generated after only a single viewing of Atlas Shrugged, Part 1. If you have any additions, please leave them in the comment section.
Now get Chugging! For liberty!
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