P K Dick was a prolific science fiction writer whose works have stood the test of time. While many of his novels and short stories have been made into movies, he did not live to witness the rise of his work to the iconic status that it has today.
Dick's work is infused with paranoia, introspection, paradoxes confusing multiple realities and identities, and prescient insights into the future of society.
Movies based on Dick's work include Bladerunner (based on the award winning book, "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep"), Screamers (based on a short story called "Second Variety"), Total Recall (based on the short story "We have memories for you wholesale"), Minority Report (based on the short story of the same name), and A Scanner Darkly (based on the novel of the same name).
Despite this, there are many brilliant novels and stories by Dick that have not made it to the big screen. The novel "The man in the High Castle" won the Hugo award and is considered by many to be his greatest achievement. "Ubik" and "Now Wait for Last Year" are also acclaimed Dick works.
Dick was suspicious of authority, and this suspicion icarries over into his stories, which are filled with humans in oppressive, totalitarian societies controlled by either military organizations or corporations. Frequently the authorities are hiding the true nature of reality from the populace. For example in the short story Faith of Our Fathers, the water supply is contaminated with a drug that removes people's ability to correctly identify societys leaders as society's enemies. In other stories, the government leads people to believe that a war is conducted when there is no war, or the war has finished.
Dick's spiritual insights and complex ideas about religion, in such works as VALIS and The Transmigration of Timothy Archer, have found a wide reaching audience, and are credited with a renewed interest in gnosticism, to which Dick himself ascribed.