Escaping from L.A., and other things that’ll happen in 2013

Hello, and happy new year! Here’s a look at some of the things that’ll be happening in 2013:

  • Kevin Costner will become a letter carrier and save what’s left of the world.
  • Snake Plissken will escape from L.A.

Plissken, as you might but probably don’t remember, is the character Kurt Russell played in the 1981 movie “Escape from New York.” It’s set in 1997, which seemed like the future 32 years ago. In the movie, Manhattan had been converted into a maximum security prison, and Snake has to escape.

Escape_From_LA“Escape from L.A.” came out in 1996 and took place in the then-futuristic year of 2013. In this one, Southern California has been severed from the rest of the continent by a giant earthquake, and Snake has to escape from Los Angeles.

“The Postman,” the 1997 movie where Kevin Costner plays the titular letter carrier, also is set in 2013, after the world has been devastated by nuclear war and the only thing separating us from the animals is the U.S. Postal Service, or something. I don’t know. I never saw it, but I’m pretty sure that’s the story they outlined in the trailer.

Other than “Star Trek” and the first sequel to “Back to the Future” (hoverboards!), I can’t think of any Hollywood movies that predict a rosy future.

According to Hollywood, we’re only five years from when the humans will square off against Skynet (“Terminator Salvation,” released in 2009, set in 2018) and play Rollerball (“Rollerball,” 1975), and we’re a mere six years from when replicants will run amok in a rainy and neon-lit Los Angeles (“Blade Runner,” 1982).

It’s only nine years until an overpopulated world finally chows down on “Soylent Green” (released in 1973, set in 2022).

Since the movies never get it right, here are my predictions for 2013:

  • Your phone will get smarter.
  • You’ll recognize fewer of the names in the “celebrity birthdays” column in the paper (or online or wherever).
  • You’ll have a mild freak-out when you realize that this year’s high-school class of 2013 was born in 1995 and that the following things happened in ’94: O.J. Simpson and Al Cowlings fled police in a white Ford Bronco, Nelson Mandela was sworn in as president of South Africa and WXYC, the student-run radio station at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, became the first radio station in the history of radio stations to stream its signal over the Internet.
  • Also, in 1994, people were still calling it the information superhighway.

Time marches on. Happy new year.