Orson Welles’s voice is so distinctive that the creators of the ’90s animated series “Pinky and the Brain” based the voice of the titular Pinky on the famed director. So yeah, Welles had a great set of pipes and it’s no wonder he started his career on the radio, or why director Alex Grasshoff tapped Welles to drop some narration on a short documentary.
Open Culture shared Grasshoff’s 45-minute-long documentary “Future Shock,” and before Y2K, there was this. The short doc is based on futurist Alvin Toffler’s 1970 book on his conjectures of what the future of technology will bring for us as a society—SPOILER: nothing good. Basically, Toffler put forth the notion back then that things were changing too quickly, and that humans simply weren’t prepared to deal with such rapid technological growth. Maybe it’s a good thing he didn’t live to see the frenzy whenever a new iPhone is announced.
As always, Welles brings the vocal heat. Watch “Future Shock” below, and see how eerily close the predictions from the early 1970s are to what’s happening here in our present (or not).