Philip K. Dick

An American novelist, short story writer and essayist 
(1928 - 1982)


The writer - "Ubik" - Listening -

Adaptations / Films :


Comics -

Quiz - Worksheets - Videos

(Page created on 12/04/2011)



Related pages :

Science fiction



The writer :



  • Personal quotes (
    ex : " The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words. If you can control the meaning of words, you can control the people who must use the words."



"Ubik" :

  • Ubik (1969)
    "Philip K. Dick's searing metaphysical comedy of death and salvation (the latter available in a convenient aerosol spray) is tour de force of paranoiac menace and unfettered slapstick, in which the departed give business advice, shop for their next incarnation, and run the continual risk of dying yet again."
    Plot Summary / Reviews / Cover Art Gallery 


  • Ubik (1969) 'uses extensive networks of psychics and a suspended state after death in creating a state of eroding reality.
    A group of psychics is sent to investigate a group of rival psychics, but several of them are apparently killed by a saboteur's bomb.
    Much of the novel flicks between a number of equally plausible realities; the "real" reality, a state of half-life and psychically manipulated realities. In 2005, Time magazine listed it among the "All-TIME 100 Greatest Novels" published since 1923."


Listening :

Adaptations - Films :


  • Total Recall (2012)

    Total Recall (1990), "based on the short story "We Can Remember It for You Wholesale", directed by Paul Verhoeven and starring Arnold Schwarzenegger."


    Things to Recall About Total Recall
    "In honor of the remake, here are some fascinating facts about the original movie and the short story that inspired it all."

    "The plot concerns an apparently unsophisticated construction worker, Doug Quaid (Schwarzenegger), who turns out to be a freedom fighter from Mars who has been relocated to Earth,
    and his attempts to restore order, and reverse the corrupt
    influence of commercial powers..."

    "It features a classic meshing of reality, false memory
    and real memory...
    Douglas Quail, a simple and ordinary man, wishes to visit Mars. Unable to afford it, he visits a company, Rekal, Incorporated, that offers implanted memories ("extra-factual memory"). The attempt to implant some racy Mars memories of Quail as a secret agent reveals that Quail actually is an undercover government assassin with a mind full of dangerous secrets..."



    Visit the "Total Recall" page
    - with photos


    Total Recall - gen




  • Screamers (1995), "based on Dick's short story "Second Variety", directed by Christian Duguay and starring Peter Weller."


    "Screamers is set in the year 2078 on the planet Sirius 6B, a once thriving commercial hub and mining colony now reduced to a wasteland by a prolonged war between the colony's miners, called the Alliance, and their former employers, the New Economic Block. Five years into the war, Alliance scientists created a revolutionary weapon system called the 'Autonomous Mobile Sword', a semi-artificial intelligent,subterraneanself-replicating, machine. Due to the high-pitched squeal emitted by the machines when they attack, the Alliance nicknamed their creations, 'Screamers'..."


    "It is one of Dick's many stories in which nuclear war has rendered the Earth's surface an uninhabitable, gray ash pile, and the only things remaining are killer robots and a scattered humanity..."
    It "occurs in the aftermath of an extensive nuclear war between the Soviet Union (sometimes referred to as Russia)
    and the United Nations..."


    Visit the "Screamers" page
    - with photos


    Screamers (1995) Theatrical Trailer




    Read this book online or download it.





  • Minority Report (2002), "based on Dick's short story of "The Minority Report", directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Tom Cruise."


    "It is set primarily in Washington, D.C. and Northern Virginia in
    the year 2054, where "PreCrime", a specialized police department, apprehends criminals based on foreknowledge provided by three psychics called "precogs"...
     The film's central theme is the question of
    free will
     vs. determinism...
    Other themes include the role of preventative government in protecting its citizenry, the role of media in a future state where electronic advancements make its presence nearly boundless, the potential legality of an infallible prosecutor, and Spielberg's
    repeated theme of broken families..."


    "The story is about a future society where murders are
    prevented through the efforts of threemutants who can see the future. Paradoxes and alternate realities are created by the precognition of crimes when the chief of police intercepts a precognition that he is about to murder a man he has never met.
    The story also touches upon the dangers of a powerful post-war military during peacetime. Like many stories dealing with
    knowledge of future events, "The Minority Report" questions
    the existence of free will..."


    Visit the "Minority Report" page
    - with photos

    Minority Report Trailer

    'Minority Report' Mall Scene
    "This is a scene from the movie Minority Report
    Tom Cruise walks in the mall while his eyes are getting
    scanned by 3D screens.
    The screens call him directly by his name to get his attention."



    "In 'Minority Report', Chief John Anderton (Tom Cruise)
    prevented crimes by seeing into the future - with a little help
    from precog Agatha (Samantha Morton)."


  • Paycheck (2003), "directed by John Woo and starring Ben Affleck, based on Dick's short story of the same name."


    "Michael Jennings is a reverse engineer; for enormous sums
    of money, he analyzes his clients' competitors' products and
    designs new versions that excel above and beyond the original's features. When he finishes a job, he undergoes a memory wipe
    with help from his friend Shorty. The wipe is achieved by
    computer technology able to scan one's brain and erase
    whatever must be erased..."


    "Jennings, a talented electronic engineer, has accepted a bizarre contract with Rethrick Construction. The terms of the contract
    state that he will work for two years on a secret project after
    which he will have his memory of the time erased and will be paid
    an inordinate sum. He wakes up to find that during his tenure he decided to forgo the payment of money and instead receive an envelope of trinkets..."


    Visit the "Paycheck" page
    - with photos

    Paycheck.(2003) - TRAILER





  • Next (2007), "directed by Lee Tamahori and starring Nicolas Cage, loosely based on the short story "The Golden Man"."


    "Cris Johnson (Nicolas Cage) can see into his future. He can only see two minutes ahead, with the exception of a vision he once had
    of a woman walking into a diner. Because there are no details
    other than the time, he goes to the diner twice each day at 8:09, to await her arrival. He works as a small-time magician in Las Vegas, where he supplements his income with gambling, using his powers
    to win against the house. He draws the attention of FBI agent
    Callie Ferris (Julianne Moore), who has figured out his ability
    and wants to stop terrorists from detonating a nuclear weapon..."


    "The story is set in a post-apocalyptic future, where the existence
    of potentially powerful mutants has become a reality. The mutants are seen as dangerous and have been hunted to death by human beings for years. A golden-skinned mutant called Cris is captured
    by the government, which attempts to execute him. However, his appearance and abilities to see into the future allow him to escape. The end of the story implies that this golden mutant race will
    replace humanity..."


    Visit the "Next" page
    - with photos

    Next - Trailer




  • The Adjustment Bureau (2011), "directed by George Nolfi and starring Matt Damon, loosely based on the short story "Adjustment Team"."


    The story "features a smooth-talking congressman whose political future is thrown in doubt by uncontrollable events and the arrival
    of a mysterious woman in his life..."



    "Sector T137 is scheduled for adjustment, and a Clerk is
    supervising a canine Summoner to ensure real estate salesman
    Ed Fletcher is inside Sector T137 during the process. An 8:15
    bark to summon a Friend With A Car is needed. Unfortunately,
    the bark is a minute late, bringing an Insurance Salesman,
    causing Fletcher to leave for work late. Arriving at Sector T137
    after it's been de-energized, Fletcher enters a terrifying gray ash world. Escaping white-robed men, he flees across the street back
    to the everyday energized world outside Sector T137, fearing he's had a psychotic episode..."





Comics :

  • Marvel Comics "adapted Dick's short story "The Electric Ant" as a limited series which was released in 2009..."
    "Garson Poole wakes up after a flying-car-crash to find that he has lost a hand. He then finds out that he is in fact an 'electric ant' - an organic 
    . He further finds out that what he believes is his subjective reality is in fact being fed from a micro-punched tapein his chest cavity.
    He experiments on this tape by adding new holes, which adds things to his reality..."


    Dick said of the story:

    "Again the theme: How much of what we call "reality" is actually out there or rather within our own head? The ending of this story has always frightened me... image of the rushing wind, the sound of emptiness. As if the character hears the final fate of the world itself."



Quiz :

  • We Can Remember it for You Wholesale 
    "This is a quiz about the story 'We Can Remember it for You Wholesale' by Philip K Dick, on which the film 'Total Recall' was based."

  • The Fiction of Philip K. Dick 
    "One of the most original and inventive science fiction writers of all time, Philip K. Dick's reputation has grown steadily since his death. This quiz is dedicated to the strange worlds of his fiction. Enjoy!"


Worksheets :

  • Blade Runner - (Lycéens au Cinéma) "activities and links based on this film and issues involving robots and computers."

Videos :