Category Archives: Lo Fi Sci Fi

Approaching the Unknown (2016)

Previously Ad Inexplorata “Toward the Unexplored

Director: Mark Elijah Rosenberg
Starring: Mark Strong, Sanaa Latham, Luke Wilson, Charles Baker .UK. 1h 30m

A deeply philosophical sci fi drama that borders the aesthetics of lo fi and challenges a lot of immortal questions about mankind exploring anything about the world around them as well as the wells of unknowns from within.

There’s a ton of highly sophisticated looking tech and a groundbreaking invention at the centre of this one way trip into the void. But Director Mark Rosenberg is more focused on creating an intelligent and driven character and isn’t happy until he’s peeled back all of his layers to get the most intimate look into a fictional character that I’ve seen in a long time. Apart from his pet project, which literally milks water from rocks, the rest of the tech isn’t the shiny fan dangled aspect but Captain William Stanaforth (Strong) does know this machinery all too well inside and out but it doesn’t mean everything is going to run smoothly despite his expertise. Continue reading Approaching the Unknown (2016)

The Dark Red (2018)

Director: Dan Bush
Starring: April Billingsley, Kelsey Scott, Conal Bryne, Rhoda Griffis .USA. 1h 41m

An interesting idea with lots of character twists and turns in Dan Bush’s courageous drama that taps into the bond of blood of a particular family with uncanny powers. For the most part what seems to be a challenging time for one woman in a mental institution eventually creeps into a much more powerful action drama that has all the making of a really decent sci-fi fantasy drama but doesn’t come across with as much power as it might have if handled differently, but it did keep me glued while it transformed into something deeper and more meaningful, maybe there will be a chance to break this story open in a sequel? Continue reading The Dark Red (2018)

Alphaville (1965)

AKA Alphaville: une étrange aventure de Lemmy Caution (Alphaville: A Strange Adventure of Lemmy Caution) Tarzan Vs IBM
Director: Jean-Luc Godard
Starring: Eddie Constantine, Anna Karina, Akim Tamiroff, Howard Vernon..France. 1h 39m

Jean-Luc Godard, the King of the French New Wave lands this cryptic and incredibly iconic, sci fi noir story in the height of the movement, while on a wild run with actress and wife, Anna Kerina, the film was released around the time that the couple divorced but he continued to work with the stunner in Pierrot le Fou (1965) released in the same year.

Godard’s ceaseless innovation lead many into the realm of radical politics and extreme formal experimentation, but few could match his raw invention. Alphaville is one of his more approachable works and offers some inspiration for the dystopian futurescape of Ridley Scott’s Blade Runner, along with having strong parallels with John Boorman’s classic revenge flick, Point Blank (1967). Continue reading Alphaville (1965)

Frequencies / OXV: The Manual (2013)

Director: Darren Paul Fisher
Starring: Daniel Fraser, Eleanor Wyld. UK. 1h 45m.

Synopsis : Are human conditions, actions, relationships determined by fate, free will, or a combination of both? At any rate, if it we cannot control it – should we care?

Initially the slow drama of Frequencies starts out at school, where not only is the young and emotive Zak (Fraser) an outcast due to his low frequency he’s also deeply in love with the top girl Marie (Wyld) who is a victim of her high frequency, which totally rids her of any emotions or feelings. In this unconventional universe when they meet, their unusually high and low frequencies creates tremendous havoc. In their 60 seconds or less meetings they form a strained friendship, Zak being the lab rat while Marie tests the effects of their encounters. Later on in life, Zak’s persistent attempts to raise his frequency with the help of his best friend leads him to a discovery that not only uncovers our past but unlocks many secrets and has the potential to change all of our futures. Continue reading Frequencies / OXV: The Manual (2013)

They Remain (2017)

Director: Philip Gelatt.
Starring. William Jackson Harper, Rebecca Henderson USA. 1h 42m.

Based on: They Remain by Laird Barron.

Exploration is the focus of this psychological sci fi thriller, but the execution is as conflicting as the main characters grasp on reality and eventually the slow burning just fizzles out after several meandering mistakes which were supposed to build tension. They Remain explores a relationship of two scientists , Keith (Harper) and Jessica (Henderson) who are employed to investigate  an area which was once a camp for a mysterious cult. It’s not very clear what they are doing for a long stretch of the movie, the two seem to have bizarre conversations while looking at camera feeds and “researching”, apparently sent by a mysterious corporation identifies by it’s geometric corporate logo and no more.

Continue reading They Remain (2017)

The Discovery (2017)

Director: Charlie McDowell
Starring:Jason Segel, Rooney Mara, Robert Redford, Jesse Plemons. USA. 1h 41m

Boy meets girl on a ferry  months after a world shattering invention has been made. A reserved and often recluse scientist Thomas Harbor (Redford) calmly sits down to tell a interviewer about his new discovery; with it, he’s proven, without a doubt, there is life after death. Instantly one of the crew members shoots themselves. The world has a record number of suicides as people are desperately trying to pass on to the other side, there are public counters that are constantly ringing up the number of dead,  in the meantime, the boy and girl are journeying to meet, Harbor (Redford) the boys father and girl saviour? it’s supposed to be romantic but they animosity and angst coming from the girl makes the scene rather awkward. Continue reading The Discovery (2017)

Rememory  (2017)

Director: Mark Palansky
Starring. Peter Dinklage, Anton Yelchin, UK. 1h 31m.

This is stunning film with some haunting scenes, which linger in the memory but alas by the ending credits I felt as if something was missing from this well-crafted venture that took away the re-watch-ability.

Peter Dinklage brings an amazing character to life in this deep vibrant story. After having a few too many drinks he drives his brother home but the pair crash, leaving him as the sole survivor, his brother mumbles some words which he can’t make out and then he dies.  But Sam (Dinklage)  isn’t ready to accept that’s the end and writes to a brilliant scientist, Gordon Dunn (Donovan)  who has invented a machine, that re plays your memories, apparently we all have the ability to remember everything but not the ability to recall it. This Rememory machine is able to get into a person’s brain and recall everything from our first moment on the planet. It sounds wonderful and  Sam sees this as a chance to work out what his brother way trying to say, but one fateful night  after a disgruntled ex-patient visits, the scientist is found dead, supposedly of natural causes but there are bullet holes in the wall, was it murder or an aneurysm as the newspapers reported. The machine cannot be found or reversed engineered as Dunn kept everything secret. While his employers stress over losing the invention of a lifetime, ???? uses the stolen machine to find out what happened to Dunn and digs into his own forgotten memories. Continue reading Rememory  (2017)

+ 1, Plus One, Shadow Walkers (2015)

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Director:Dennis Iliadis
Starring: Ashley Hinshaw, Rhys Wakefield, Natalie Hall. USA. 1h 39m

Along with a new wave of sophisticated teen sensation thrillers like It Follows (2014), Dark Summer (2015) and The Guest (2014), Plus 1 also swans around like a peacock flaunting an unusual story told in a unfamiliar fashion. The summer party to break all records has begun but something strange has invited itself to the party with devastating consequences. Continue reading + 1, Plus One, Shadow Walkers (2015)

Upstream colour (2015)

upstream-colour

Director: Shane Carruth.
Starring: Shane Carruth, Amy Seimetz, Andrew Sensenig, Thiago Martins. USA. 1h 36m

So after the success of Primer (2004) Shane Carruth is back with even more bizarro Lo fi sci fi that he refuses to explain to deeply and again no one questions why they just sit back and let the story take them away.

The story is unusual but is more linear but remains open for interpretation, which can be annoying sometimes but Shane Carruth manages to make it more enthralling by giving the viewer more opportunities to accept his dream like story… that starts out as a nightmare. Continue reading Upstream colour (2015)

Creative Control (2015)

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Director:Benjamin Dickinson .

Starring: Benjamin Dickinson, Nora Zehetner, Dan Gill, Alexia Rasmussen, Reggie Watts. USA. 1h 37m.

In the near future a Brooklyn ad executive uses a a program to conduct an affair with his best friends girlfriend in virtual reality. Creative Control is an ultra modern, hipsterish sci fi romantic comedy with drastic connotations, David (Benjamin Dickinson) is tasked to come up with an advertising campaign for a virtual reality system called Augmenta. David gets to try it out to perfect the campaign that he’s working on with his team and Reggie Watts (Reggie Watts) but the amazing system starts to pull david into the darker recesses of his sexual psyche as he begins to obsess over his best friends girlfriend Sophie (Alexia Rasmussen) His long time suffering girlfriend, despite her outer calm as a Yoga instructor is totally out of synch with David and beings falling for a colleague, David often has to cover for his bestie Wim (Dan Gill) and he doesn’t think twice about cheating on Sophie but somehow David has to keep this all together (with the help of lots of pharmaceuticals and other recreationals) in order work in a highly prestigious project with a incredibly opinionated team, look out for the pilot advert scene.. it’s GOLD. Continue reading Creative Control (2015)