Jeff Bridges: Americans Must Be Engaged to Avoid Totalitarian State

Jeff Bridges: Americans Must Be Engaged to Avoid Totalitarian State

Actor Jeff Bridges can’t help but address some heady themes while talking up his new project, The Giver.

The upcoming film, based on the challenging children’s book of the same name by Lois Lowry, explores a society where conformity and comfort have taken the place of risk and rewards.

Bridges tells’s Rebecca Cusey that the film’s soft totalitarian mindset is one that could happen today if we’re not careful.

And by careful the actor means diligent, informed and ready to speak out against injustice rather than shrug our collective shoulders.

I think although the movie takes place in some future time that it is very relective of our own and there’s a bit of a cautionary tale of how us humans roll and what we’re capable of. And the brutality and the subtleties of our brutality toward each other and also the love and the strength that’s inherent in us. Those times [McCarthyism] that you mention were certainly dark times that we struggled with. Us human beings are still capable of that kind of thing. We need to be on guard for that and look for that. Not numb ourselves to it. Be engaged. One of the biggest challenges for us at this stage, I know for myself, is to not be cynical, you know, throw up our hands. We need to be engaged.

The Giver hits theaters nationwide Aug. 15.