John Thomas

The concerns of overpopulation, diminishing natural resources and global weather changes are taken very serious by many. There is a scientific research laboratory in Norway that takes these issues seriously enough to strive for any solution – even a radical one. Knowing the impossibility of making our planet larger to accommodate these billions of big people, they work toward making the big people smaller – downsize them. They were finally successful with mice, downsizing people is next.

Years later, the world has accepted this new technology and has made all sorts of accommodations for these five inch tall people. There are residential communities, modes of public transportation and everything else designed for them to be able to lead normal lives – thereby lightening our planet’s environmental burden. There are many such communities throughout the world. One of them is “Leisureland,” located in New Mexico

Paul (Matt Damon) still lives in his parents home (both deceased), with his wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig). She wants to move into a larger, better home; he feels that they can’t afford one.

If they are downsized, however, he figures they can own a miniature mansion at a fraction of the cost of a normal sized home. He does the math and decides to downsize and move to Leisureland – she reluctantly agrees.

As thrilling as the prospect of a new life, in a larger home, in an environmentally correct environment is, Paul soon discovers drawbacks. As in normal-sized environments there are class distinctions, social injustice, income differences and luckily a few fun loving, scheming entrepreneurs like Dustan (Christoph Waltz) to stir things up. As different as he and Paul are, they become friends.

Residents of these small communities eventually have to come to grips with issues that are beyond their control, problems that both large and small citizens must face. Alarming environmental troubles in Antarctica call for drastic action, especially on the part of the downsized communities. Again, Norway has a radical solution in mind. Paul, Dustan and a fellow hedonists travel to Norway to explore their options. It is now serious decision making time.

Directed by Alexander Payne, Downsizing runs 135 minutes and is a “must see” movie.


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