In The Adjustment Bureau (in theaters this Friday), cock-blocking is taken to metaphysical extremes. Matt Damon stars as New York City politician who falls in love with a free-spirited and gorgeous ballerina (Emily Blunt), which would be a typical love story if not for how immensely their budding relationship pisses off higher powers. The title refers to a group of otherworldly secret agents who make sure people stay on their preordained life trajectories; in Damon’s case, dating Blunt alters his future’s design and could prevent him from ever becoming one of the country’s most important leaders. Based on a short story by late sci-fi author Philip K. Dick, The Adjustment Bureau is really more of a high-concept romance than a science fiction thriller, but its central idea is disconcerting. The film, directed by George Nolfi (co-writer of The Bourne Ultimatum), taps into the universal fear of “Big Brother,” a label given to the almighty, yet unseen, controlling forces that, in cinema, can take the form of shady government organizations, dangerous CIA units, and unearthly beings. Intrigued by The Adjustment Bureau’s premise, we’ve recounted the 10 Scariest Big Brother Movies. Welcome to paranoia.

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