Like a Rand Paul rally rendered in the style of Grand Theft Auto, Silver Circle engineers the perfect marriage of sub-par animation and sloppy thinking. It’s a year after the economic crisis of 2014, and the federal government (boo! hiss!) has taken control of the nation’s economy, outlawing hard currency in favor of what the movie’s heroes invariably refer to as “worthless paper money.” Rampant inflation caused by the Federal Reserve’s incessant minting of new bills has left most Americans broke: A beer costs $100 and change, a paperback book a cool $200.
Fortunately, there’s a rebel underground, which former T-Man De’Lon Grant stumbles upon while investigating a suspicious fire at a housing development whose residents are being forced to sell their homes to the government. Sultry Philana Mia, whom he naturally falls into bed with at the first available opportunity, ushers him into the secret base where the would-be revolutionaries mint contraband silver coins that are theoretically immune to inflation, the idea being to give government-issued greenbacks some “competition.”
The why and the how of the rebels’ master plan remains murky, since apart from an overriding belief that dollar bills are the devil’s handmaidens, Silver Circle is strangely nonspecific in its conspiratorial complaints. Current Fed chairman Ben Bernanke’s name appears in a background graffito, but there’s no mention of Fort Knox or the bank bailouts, or any history past the early 19th century (and that’s counting the fact that the heroine has a dog named Jefferson). Tune out a few speeches—and they’re easy to tune out—and the bad guys could as easily be S.P.E.C.T.R.E. or the Hellfire Club.
In a toxic climate where political opponents are accused of everything but guzzling baby’s blood, Silver Circle’s toothless antagonism is almost welcome. Sure, government troops shoot down a citizen for pulling out a handheld camera during a protest, but for the most part the corruption comes down to a handful of greedy politicians and their henchmen—a few bad apples, as it were. Even for a cartoon, Silver Circle paints with far too broad a brush.