The Blog

Chris Matthews: Maybe Someone Like Tom Cruise's Character from 'Minority Report' Could Prevent a Shooting

2:19 PM, Jul 24, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
Widget tooltip
Single Page Print Larger Text Smaller Text Alerts

MSNBC host Chris Matthews suggested last night on national television that maybe someone like Tom Cruise's character from the movie Minority Report might be able to prevent a future shooting like the one that took place in a Colorado movie theater last week. Matthews made the suggestion when talking to a survivor of the shooting and Dr. Michael Brannon, a forensic psychologist and a director at the Institute for Behavioral Sciences and the Law.

"You know, I've seen -- I`m a movie buff, like everybody knows," Matthews said, turning to the doctor to pose his question. "I hope everybody remains a movie buff, to be quite blunt about this, because I love them, the experience of going to a theater."

But here`s the question. I saw a movie called Minority Report. Tom Cruise was it, sci-fi movie that said you can catch people ahead of time. You can find their projection into the future. I know that`s the sci-fi part. Is there any way in real life to figure out a guy like this ahead of time?

The guests on Matthews's show, Hardball, seemed surprised. Then, the doctor spoke up.

"Chris, prediction is very difficult because not a lot of people do these kinds behaviors. In psychology, we talk about the base rate being real low," Brannon said.

"So we don't know a lot about these kinds of people. We know in general what increases risk potential and causes people to be more dangerous, but we don`t know specifically what causes someone to do this kind of behavior."

Last week's mass murder rampage resulted in 12 deaths and dozens of injuries.

Recent Blog Posts

The Weekly Standard Archives

Browse 15 Years of the Weekly Standard

Old covers