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« 1980-1990 Developments (1979) | Main | Memory of 'Tomorrow' (New York Times, 1941) »

1999 A.D. (1967)

Split second lunches, color-keyed disposable dishes, all part of the instant society of tomorrow. A society rich in leisure and taken-for-granted comforts.

In 1967 the Philco-Ford Corporation released a short film titled 1999 A.D. In it the inevitable advances of the future are demonstrated. This clip of the kitchen of the future showcases a world of automation, maximized health, and a push-button culture; themes we see throughout the film.

Like the film Future Shock, you can find 1999 A.D. on the DVD Yesterday's Tomorrows Today, released by A/V Geeks.

See also:
Call a Serviceman (Chicago Tribune, 1959)
Monsanto House of the Future (1957-1967)

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Reader Comments (49)

I like how they at least got flat panel TVs right, so early. It's pretty rare...

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMark

The future used to have a much cooler soundtrack.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterNathan

They anticipated the foodstuffs alright, but not Feminism. haha joke's on them.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterLeila

I think role of the ungrateful husband is played by Wink Martindale.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterding


April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMichael

Interesting that they predicted the prevalence of OCD (the kid). Rarely do you see utopian visions incorporate mental disorders.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterinterrobang

And June 2, 1999 was a Wednesday, not a Tuesday.

They didn't foresee we'd have enough intertubes to figure that out at the touch of a button.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterYamara

It's funny, most everything in the video we're ABLE to do with current technology, but don't bother with. Who wants to use a webcam to communicate with your kid who's in the other room? Shouting across the house will never be obsolete!

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterjathomas

that's wink martindale as the husband! xlnt film!

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterEvan

Hmmm... If everything's cooked and presented in little white microwavable boxes, why does she need that impressive array of copper clad cookware on the wall?

But, jathomas, I already use IM to communicate to my kids in the next room! (LOL)

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterk

Life, sanitised. Yikes! I'm off to the woods with my snare to catch myself a pheasant.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJake

Heh heh - the narrator said "de-thawing". Is that a real word?

Also, they failed to anticipate the importance of Chinese take-out in the future. Tsk tsk.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRustybadger

Apparently the house of the future as depicted here is about a half-mile long. The fact that it takes the kid more than 10 seconds to get to the kitchen is highly suspect.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterartbot

Is that Larry King narrating?

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterDarla

I saw this film in junior high, when the film was almost a decade old, and 1999 was over two decades away!

Funny to see it again now as an adult.

Tonight, we're going to party like it's this movie.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterDr Fly

Whatever would we DO without our disposable color-coded dishes and frozen food packets?

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The whole Food Police computer program thing is waaay creepy... scuse me whilst I go snarf some seerious red meat with a cheesecake chaser!!!! hehehe

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRivahcat

That's an ENORMOUS microwave oven for one TV dinner... and the conveyor belt was just over the top! Many of us guys would have our meals heated by body temperature, as the wife we are yelling at inserts it into our bottoms. This is pure sixties, right down to the clothes and hairstyles.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBradley

I like how back then the microwave was the be-all end-all of cooking in the future. Little did they know that microwaved food would generally suck compared to food cooked the old-fashioned way.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterJanna Banana

I can't get over the computer with its flat monitor(s). Hell, a casual-use computer with *any* kind of video monitor would be a pretty progressive thought for '67. Damn--that thing looks just like the LCD in front of me...

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Reminds me of the episode of the Simpsons with Pierce Brosnan as the house, deciding what's good for the family...

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Loose the crappy attitude of the husband and kid and is it really a bad idea? A program that could suggest foods and an inventory for your food stash full of healthy things could be an improvement for society over just randomly picking crap to eat that is not balanced.
Believe it or not some women including myself still cook for their families. I don't know about all the microwaving in the short. Yuck.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterKirsten

The husband in that flick is none other than Tic Tac Dough's own Wink Martindale. wow, i need to get a life

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

They left out the part about everybody working for the man 60 hours per week.

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterC.

1. Nice flat screen, with the aux screens above it.

2. The computer writes to the screen very slowly, as if a human off-screen is typing as she watches.

3. Isn't that the same band that played behind Shatner's chart-topping hits?

April 30, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

"How about a chicken salad"

Wow. Just wow.

Well, at least they got the fact that everyone is slender and pays attention to their calorie intake right.

May 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

That's not a microwave, that's a pizza oven with stage lighting.

They were also wrong about low-cal beer being any better tasting today than when it was invented.

If I were Wink, I'd stagger up to that table after downing a quart of futuristic kentucky bouron to face my microwaved beef and salad.

May 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterTFC1

I like how the kid, in order to wash his face, touches some drag racing starting lights and then does his best impression of Drew Barrymore as Firestarter.

May 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

The thing that was as wide as two refrigerators was not the microwave, it was the computer. Remember, computers were huge back then, and they didn't know at the time that Moore's law would be kicking in.

May 1, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I disagree that the wide thing was the computer, possibly, but I would guess that was the frozen food storage side of the system. Frozen storage on the left, microwave in the middle, dispense on the right. In 1967 (during Apollo) getting basics like that right would be a point of pride.

We're actually close to this now, but without automated delivery. Its not cost-effective, and most importantly, eliminates visibility of the branding of the food in there. You can't see colorful labels and such, though at this time they didn't anticipate the computer could show icons to brand the foods either...

May 4, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRon

It's a good thing it's a small family. Can you imagine several more auxiliary monitors attached to the larger screen.

May 6, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterBradley

Ahh, the 1960s version of the future!

Instead we have a government run by anti-science obscurantists, corporations run by bean-counters instead of innovators, and the looming crises of peak oil and global warming.

So here's your mid 21st Century lunch for you:

Junior goes out with his slingshot to bag a nice fresh rat, or if they're in the country, a squirrel.

Meanwhile Sis is gathering edible plants from the woods.

Dad skins the rat and prepares it for the pot, while Mom is busy searching up whatever spices she may have in order to make it taste vaguely edible.

Cooking is done over a fire fueled by wood or waste paper or perhaps lumps of coal.

There is still beer, home-brewed as it was in the bad old days before clean public drinking water, for the same reason: to provide a beverage that is resistant to bacterial infestations.

As for disposable dishes, large leaves will do, gathered from tropical plants that have migrated into the once-temperate zone.

And after lunch, time for a brief snooze, in the cozy cool comfort of the family cave.

I can hardly wait...

May 7, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

With French Fries, and a Niiice cold
bottle of beer..."
Being that this was made in '67, methinks he means Miller High Life or Schlitz or something like that...
In the REAL 1999, he might have ordered a Sam, Sam Adams, or something imported.
In reality, microwave food isn't all *that* bad, if you get decent brands.....

May 26, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterjoseph

Someone should do this over, as a cartoon/animated parody of The Sopranos in '99 (when A.J. was a little, rolly-poly kid)...
Have Tony a little grouchier, and when they sit at the table, A.J. says his famous old like from back in the day, "So, what, no #$%$^kin' ZITI now?"...
Then Tony sips some of the no-cal beer, and they sample a line from a recent ep where he tasted Christopher's no-alcohol beer and says, "Less filling - tastes like @$$!"....

May 26, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterjoseph

A house where people never see or talk to each other and only stare at flat panel displays? That could *never* happen.....

They may not have gotten feminism quite right, but they got birth control. Only one kid in the Wink house.

July 12, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterMadScott

Actually, depictions of flat screen tv's were to be expected-- it was an active area of research '64 for graphical computer displays. The application to TV may be novel.

I was lucky enough to have a class taught by Donald Bitzer about 10 years ago in college. Awesome.

August 6, 2007 | Unregistered Commenterthatguy

Mom was really hot.
It was a time when women could be hot without containing silicone for those uugly "knee bangers".
The part which let on that it was fake was that the brat didn't whine and smart mouth Mom.

September 10, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Makes you long for the good old days when you could beat your kids and tell your ungrateful husband to shove it.

September 11, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterKerryJ

Add me to the list of them that can't figure out how the displays look like flat panel LCDs back when there all videos used CRTs. Matte photography?

September 20, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterOiltranslator

Yes, the lovely brunette is indeed Marj Dusay; TV, movie actress, stealer of "Spock's Brain", who's present TV role is Alexandra Spaulding on Guiding Light. What a gas seeing this! I just bought and sent her a copy of the DVD "Yesterday's Tomorrow Today," that her "1999A.D." is included on.

She's still quite good with computers!

September 21, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterRadioLadyOh

One thing they got half right...the use of the exercise equipment. On the one hand, they're correct in showing it unused and primarily serving as an obstacle course. On the other hand, where is the laundry that's normally hanging on it? Maybe the clothes are color-coded and disposable, too, like paper Garanimals?

October 4, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous



December 13, 2007 | Unregistered CommenterLiz

I agree with mark on the flat panel TVs. That is rather intuitive. They also rightly portrayed the "instant and convenient" culture and throw-away society of today.

January 3, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

I agree with mark on the flat screen TVs. That's rather intuitive. They also rightly portrayed today's instant, convenient, and disposable culture (in a much more fantastical way, of course).

January 3, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

Oops...Didn't mean to put the same comment twice. Stupid computer was acting up so I thought it didn't go through....

January 3, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

It doesn't look entirely like this but they did predict the future here. All of this is in my daily routine. It's all realistic and demonstrated with the feasible technology on the time.

I applaud whoever made this what if the kid's acting is pisspoor. It's a great promo to me.

January 26, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

What a world we live in

January 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDann

A lot of people correctly identified Wink Martindale as the husband, but it's worth noting the wife is Marj Dusay, a well-known television actress who had another skirmish with a retro future when she played Kara in the infamous Star Trek episode, "Spock's Brain." In more recent years, soap opera fans knew her as Alexandra Spaulding on Guiding Light.

June 16, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCraven Lovelace

lots of leisure time with no jobs

February 3, 2011 | Unregistered Commentermcnertny

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