sci-fi

After Earth Official Trailer 2013 - Will Smith Sci-fi Movie and Viral Campaign

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After Earth (originally known as 1000 A.E.) is an upcoming science-fiction thriller film directed by M. Night Shyamalan also known for The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, and Signs. The film stars Will Smith along side his son Jaden and will publish a comic before the movie is released to set the stage for the back story. It is set far in the future and involves a crash landing back on a "unfamiliar and dangerous Earth." This viral video shows an alternate history that begins with a spacecraft crash in 1908 and the discovery of a technology called "Lightstream". I think the video looks fantastic and I like the idea of films using viral videos to get some of the exposition out of the way before the show starts.

One thousand years after cataclysmic events forced humanity's escape from Earth, Nova Prime has become mankind's new home. Legendary General Cypher Raige (Will Smith) returns from an extended tour of duty to his estranged family, ready to be a father to his 13-year-old son, Kitai (Jaden Smith). When an asteroid storm damages Cypher and Kitai's craft, they crash-land on a now unfamiliar and dangerous Earth. As his father lies dying in the cockpit, Kitai must trek across the hostile terrain to recover their rescue beacon. His whole life, Kitai has wanted nothing more than to be a soldier like his father. Today, he gets his chance.

Here is the trailer for the movie:

What do you think of the movies publishing comics or viral videos to set the back story?

In the Pines: A Thrilling Sci-fi Short Film with a Subtle Feel

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This short film has been making the rounds on the festival circuit and receiving rave reviews. The film was written & directed by Zeek Earl & Chris Caldwelly. They put the focus on imagination over budget, a winning formula no matter what the size of the project. Check out the full film below: SYNOPSIS Simultaneously an exploration of nature and psyche, "In The Pines" is a short film documenting a young woman's hunt for extraterrestrial meaning. Following a mysteriously purposeful hike through the Olympic Mountains, this film roots itself in the Pacific Northwest. It delves deep into the texture of the scene by carefully playing with macro photography, resulting in the synchronized examination of character and setting. Part science fiction, part psycho-thriller, part poetry–all elements fuse together to create a memorable scene viewers will be eager to revisit.

In The Pines (Short Film) from Shep Films on Vimeo.

Check out their next upcoming project, Prospect:

PROSPECT: Concept Reel from Shep Films on Vimeo.

From their Kickstarter campaign page:

PROSPECT is an unusual coming-of-age story following a teenage girl and her father on a foreign planet as they hunt for resin, the valuable byproduct of rare insects. Inspired in part by the California Gold Rush, the film features a planet of desperate individuals seeking their fortunes, governed only by natural law. When the father is attacked by a roving bandit, the daughter must take vengeance.

Link: Shep Films

'Robbie': A Brilliantly Imaginative Short Film that Proves Narrative is the Key

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Robbie, the short film by Neil Harvey is almost like a homage to Stanley Kubrick's Space Odyssey 2001. I think the film is brilliantly imaginative and done with a certain elegance. While empathizing for Robbie the film made me reflect on my own existence. The narrative was easy to follow but very moving at the same time. The whole film was done with found footage from the NASA archives. It just proves that narrative is the key to the film experience over all the other bells and whistles. All that takes is an editing system, the right composition of music,  and some imagination.

My Illectric Sheep site has it roots in sci-fi so this short film is something a little special for me. I find it super inspiring for my future projects.

From Harvey’s description on Vimeo:

Set 6000 years the future, Robbie charts the existential reflections of an aging robot drifting alone through space on the last of his battery life. The film-making process involved downloading about 10 hours of footage from the NASA archives and compiling a list of shots which resonated with me at some level. I did this over about 2 or 3 months when I had the spare time. From there, I put these selected shots on an editing timeline and watched them back until characters and narratives began developing in my mind. That is when i met Robbie.

Robbie - A Short Film By Neil Harvey from Neil Harvey on Vimeo.