Review: The Platform

The Platform is a Spanish science fiction film exposing capitalism. This film is available on Netflix.

The Platform is a Spanish science fiction film exposing capitalism. This film is available on Netflix.

Brenna Polovina, Echo Co-Editor-in-Chief

   Directed by Galder Gaztelu-Urrutia and nominated for several awards, The Platform is an allegorical film portraying the violent nature of capitalism. In this film, a vertical prison is set in a futuristic, dystopian society. Each cell is stacked on top of each other with a hole in the middle for a platform of food to pass through. The prisoners at the top eat well, while the prisoners below starve.

   The plot follows a man who came to the prison voluntarily in order to quit smoking and receive a certification diploma. The man wakes up on a level with an older man who gives him the advice to survive. The old man explains that in order to survive, one must kill their partner for food. Fortunately, they are on a relatively high level, so they do not need to murder each other. Every month the prisoners wake up on a different level at random. The prisoners do not know how many levels there are, only that the prison begins with level one. The man wakes up at level 200 with his father-figure-like partner tying him to his bed. The old man explains that he will feed both of them with the young man’s flesh. They attack each other and the old man dies. Staying on his conscience, the old man makes him feel guilty for the murder. During the next month, the man receives a new partner, a woman who used to work for the prison. She explains that there is enough food for everyone in the prison; if everyone ate their share, no one would starve. She later dies by suicide. 

   The man wakes up with a new partner. They decide to go through the levels, giving each person their own share of food. They reach the last level when they see a child who appears to be healthy. The film ends when the men put the child on the platform to go back to the top as a message. This child is a metaphor for the fact that change has to come from younger generations. The film is showing the truth of capitalism: that the wealth or “food” will only satisfy the top percentage of people, leaving the lower and larger percentage to “starve” and “die.” 

   Watching this film will make you sit at the edge of your seat as you find out what it takes for the young man to survive. It will make you realize the inequality of capitalism and it’s violent outcomes.