Magical Economics 101

So, I finally got around to watching the Wizard movie after being told that it was actually fairly good. Now, this isn’t a review of the movie or my complete thoughts on the thing. All it is, is me explaining something that has been swirling around in my head since watching the film.

The neatest thing about the Wizard movie(to me) is also its biggest problem. On the surface this world, its economy and its social statuses all changing because of the inclusion of magic, is a pretty cool one. However, the moment you apply any amount of thought to it, the whole thing completely collapses.

OK, so in the real world a person uses money to purchase things(oh my god, I’m explaining how money works). In order to acquire said money a person will, more often than not, work for it. They, as previously mentioned, will then use their well deserved money on goods and services. The companies providing such goods and services will then divide the money among their various employees, providers, etcetera. Those employees then take the money that they have worked for and go about using it on their own necessities. This cycle continues on and on.

In the movie they establish that everything is paid for by using mana. Here’s the problem, the mana that they are using as currency is produced within themselves. It’s completely natural to them. Meaning they do not have to work in order to acquire their currency. If there is reward for their work, then why work? Hell, we later find out that all of the mana spent goes straight to a single source, which means that there isn’t even any sort payment for those providing services. So that means, that not only is there no reason for people to go to work, there’s not even a reason for the work to exist.

I know, I know, it’s a movie directed towards kids and here I am talking about this fictional economy, but it’s still a flaw. One that kept nagging me throughout the movie and I didn’t quite know why. It seems like some minuscule fact that kids aren’t even going to pick up on. It shouldn’t even be something necessary for the story to move forward. That’s just it, though. It’s not just this tiny overlooked thing, it’s a major plot point to the movie. The whole plan made by the antagonist completely requires this mana based economy to work. It can’t though. It just cannot work. There’s no reward, so there’s no workers. There’s no workers, so there’s no services, so there’s no mana being collected. Then suddenly you have no economy, you have a society running on nothing, and you have no plot for your movie.

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