The film follows a young tech investigator as he heads into small town America to uncover a web of crypto-related corruption and, of course, runs uncomfortably into some Russian bad guys. Photo: Lionsgate

It was only a matter of time before Hollywood jumped on the digital bandwagon and made a movie about crypto-currency. Last week Lionsgate released a trailer for its latest tech thriller, Crypto, starring none other than Kurt Russell.

As if the industry did not have enough on its plate, with a bear market that has persisted for more than a year, it has now also made it to the big screen with an action flick involving an anti-money laundering expert and the Russian mob.

If the trailer is anything to go by, the plot appears to be on the thin side. A young tech investigator heads into small-town America to uncover a web of corruption and, of course, runs uncomfortably into some Russian bad guys. There appears to be a Coinbase exchange type knockoff called Delta Coin which lists the top crypto-currencies at wildly optimistic prices. Or actually realistic ones six months ago.

The investigator protagonist, played by Beau Knapp, has been tasked with tracking a Bitcoin money laundering ring, but where Kurt Russell, who appears to play a farmer, fits into everything remains to be seen.

Hollywood’s take on blockchain appears to be equally clichéd with screens of ones and zeroes flashing across them and desktop folders named ‘Bitcoin payouts’ and ‘kickbacks’. The trailer carries the tagline “Fear is the ultimate currency” and the movie will be released on April 12, both in select theatres and on demand.

Initial reaction to the Crypto trailer by tech websites such as The Next Web has been somewhat sarcastic. This is usually the case when tech comes to the big screen and some have even likened it to the much-lampooned 1995 movie The Net. “So awful I have to see it,” read one headline about Crypto on Vice.com.

What the movie does show is that crypto-currency has come far enough to warrant its own motion picture. Even if the real draw is watching Kurt Russell playing a farmer who goes to battle with some brutish looking Russian crypto criminals.

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