By Eoin McKenna
Nosedive is the first episode of the third season of Netflix’s “Black Mirror.” It is directed by Joe Wright, a British director who previously directed the films “Pan,” “Anna Karenina” and “Hanna.”
In an interview with Digital Spy, Wright said the inspiration for Nosedive came after a critical onslaught against his 2015 film “Pan,” which received a 27 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. On the subject of “Pan’s” reviews, Wright said, “I am a deeply insecure person, and I am constantly looking for validation from other people to make me feel better. It’s probably why I’m a film director.”
Validation is a central idea of Nosedive that follows a young woman, Lacie, in the near future where every human has an account that lets them rate others and be rated. These ratings are based on personal interactions and are visible to the rest of the world.
The ratings also affect what you can do with your life. For instance, some homes are only available to individuals with a 4.5 rating or higher.
Lacie is invited to a wedding with the potential to significantly raise her rating, which results in her life eventually spiraling out of control and a complete rating nosedive. In the end, Lacie is placed in prison because of her actions at the wedding.
Nosedive presents a harrowing look at a future due to our society’s obsession with looks, popularity and personalities further amplified by social media.
We already have ways in which we can rate each other, such as the likes and comments we leave on Instagram posts, Snapchat scores, and even Tinder matches. These are all ways in which we now equate self worth with social media. Nosedive masterfully takes this reality a step further, presenting a world in which these ratings mean everything.
Bryce Dallas Howard is perfect as Lacie. Howard’s performance highlighted the obsession and insecurity that would come in a world like Nosedive. Equally good casting was Alice Eve as Naomi, Lacie’s perfect friend, who is now getting married.
The technological aspect of Nosedive made the world entirely believable, and it was clearly visually presented in the episode. Nosedive was an excellent look and warning of the future, which is soon to come. I give it a a 5/5.