Movies often give us a glimpse of the shape of things to come. If the latest installment of the Star Trek enterprise is even a remote precursor, the future, I am afraid is terribly sterile, cold and inhumane. London, depicted in the 23rd century as a sprawling megalopolis is littered with glass clad towers jutting into the stratosphere, each more twisted and gravity defying than its neighbor. The material palette is severe, mostly metal, plastic and glass, with splotches of greenery that erupt from buildings like algae blooms.
London, its messy, beautiful grit is sterilized with technology; its global culture reduced to a technocracy where even clothing seems minimal and limited in its imagination. Infact, when characters decide to go undetected on a mission, they resort to wearing what one would see in a Rick Owens fashion show.
Is the future really going to be this monotonous? Why are we imagining a world where our individuality is suppressed in the name of technical progress? And why must we all adhere to a reductive aesthetic of architecture that strips thousands of years of history, culture and celebration of community away from us?
Why must we step into darkness? I hope the future is brighter, more colorful and full of nature as most of us remember our individual childhoods to be. I hope the future is full of communities that celebrate life and culture and erect buildings that respond to the human scale and our innate desire for interaction, warmth and conviviality. I hope we live long and prosper in an ever beautiful world.