“Life support”DUST by Saleh Jamsheer(at DUST November 12th, 2021, 6:02 minutes, animated)
A seeker is often distressed by his dependencies and is constantly looking for a way to live without life support.
Review: The story takes place in an era of atmosphere meltdown. Space-suited humans live underground and are saved by aerial drones when their air supply goes down.
Favorite line for a rescue drone: “Would it be a bad time to say I told you so?” (Shaykha Sayyar as N.O.V.A. Voice of Authority
Um, yes, N.O.V.A. Now, ask us a difficult question.
The central character, 178, (Saleh Jamsheer), finds his way to the ruin of a civilization founded by drone hybrids (created in ET?). who “sacrificed themselves for their children.”He wants to be free from the space suit. He resists rescue. He soon finds himself being pursued by spherical, alien drones. It’s hard to say if this is for his own good, or just random.
It’s an absorbing meditation on the value of breathing freely when the environment is the enemy. The cave is beautiful.
Some questions, such as why drone hybrids exist, might be answered by a longer future treatment. “sacrificed themselves for their children”What does that even mean? It’s not a bad idea but it wasn’t developed.
The film is a fascinating riff on the Great Filter Hypothesis. Advanced civilizations are destroyed due to their own technology.
Takeaway: There’s never a better time to say “Yes!” “I told you so.” After the fact, it’s just noise, not signal.
Below, we have sorted the films by length in minutes or seconds so that you can choose based on your interest and how much time you have.
Five minutes or less
“This planet is not in our co-ordinates.”(3 min) A surprise for a space courier crew when they deliver a mysterious machine on a strange planet. You could almost see it. “McPherson’s Toys”This is happening, as an office gag but 500 years from now. (Animated)
The robot waits for the humans’ return (3:25 min). “Robert”A robot household assistant who does little but roam the house while humans are away. This short film is a meditation about loneliness with music accompaniment and a robot as its central character.
Three lives are subject to a cruel experiment (3:32 min). In this minimalist film, rational thought is in direct competition with the will to survive, or at least to get revenge in death. In “2-Bullet Solution,” only one of three people can survive being trapped in a test gas chamber — by shooting the other two.
Fenestra, an alien lands in a domestic drama. (3:49 min) As the alien ships loom worldwide, the cheating boyfriend thinks he can just come back… At under four minutes, Fenestra gives all the elements of a good, lean story against an alien invasion setting.
Video games can save a single survivor. (3:51 min) “High Score”Features fine animations of apocalyptic scenes after civilisation. The “game”If this is an existential struggle, it may be better to have a longer treatment. However, the animation is well-imagined.
When the robot Discovers the beauty of natureA robot dog gets caught in a time loop on a destroyed planet. If a robot dog had a dog mind, wouldn’t it prefer to be as much of a real dog as possible?
What if there are no smarter people in the future? (4 min) A series of comic scenes would be used to fill in the aerial landscape. This would dispel the usual earnestness found in sci-fi films. A brief sci-fi diversion like “Floaters”It reminds us that we don’t have to be clueless in order to solve problems. (Animated)
What if an elderly man could see his mother again. (4:02 min) “Bygone”This is a difficult film to watch if your loved one has died recently. However, it is worth the effort. The old man is willing to pay for his memories, which he retrieved via neuroscience imaging.
The machine world at its most nihilist 4 minutes 38 min This animated cyberpunk thriller shows a world where autonomous vehicles are rare and faces are very rare. The “Autonomous”Near-future world is where almost everything we see, with the exception of drug dealers, are machines. (Animated)
Would you be willing to sacrifice your life to save a particular species? (4:13 minutes) The animation and question are well-done. “Floreana”It is possible to imagine a world where we are the animals we are trying save.
A choice between saving one’s child and oneself Is life always so simple? We’ll see. (4:58 minutes) Zoe is a nice summer view with an happy ending. Technically, the actors are seasoned. Some questions remain.
Ten minutes or less
Be careful what you wish for. There is always tomorrow! (5:01). Carl, a lonely man is determined to ignore the warnings and try the Luvsik process, to make him fall for his girlfriend. The short film features strong performances by Momo Dione and Samantha Lester, and the surprise ending avoids cliché.
A girl with kinetic abilities must make a choice. (5:06 min.) Should she help relatives with activities that she knows are wrong? “Kinetic”It is well executed, but it violates a fundamental rule for science fiction: There must exist a clear science basis to the story premise.
It’s 2075! Our motto is: “Ignorance is Bliss”(5:12 minutes) This animated short invites us to think about a future where information is reduced to a kind haze. An aging neurobotanist struggles with the preservation of his knowledge of plants amid a surreal landscape filled with clutter flying among futurist buildings.
In “No Guarantee,”Brain uploading is expensive. (5:22 min) In a ruined mid-21st century Britain, a couple gains tickets to a virtual world — if their brains can be uploaded. But can they do it? This short film explores the theme of brain uploading as escape. It features characters who make serious choices.
Virtual friends can be addictive (5:31). Animated short “Best Friends”The story begins with the thirtieth party of a young, glum man. Our hero, like many addicts, cannot use his futurist fix to loneliness responsibly and ends doing desperate things.
What happens if Earth passes through a black hole (5:36 min) This story isn’t exactly about passage through a black hole: It is a meditation on nothingness that crashes headfirst into nihilismThe film prompts thought about why anyone should believe that there is no underlying order behind the universe. It is obvious from the artwork that there is.
Rescuing people who are lost. (5:41 min) Animated, in French, with English subtitles, but don’t let that deter you. The professional relationships in “Protocole Sandwich”It sounds very real and is worth the effort. The animation is very well done.
The robot vet for the disabled “A Robot Is a Robot”Gets a job as a cat groomer. (5:49 minutes) This is worth your time, in part to see what cartoonists can do with sci-fi animations. Max Planck scientists have recently concluded that intelligent AI cannot be stopped. This video is a good example.
“Are we alone?”A new sci-fi short is asked. But then, why? (5:48) “Laniakea,” we are introduced to a civilization’s – museum? Or is it something else? An intriguing Sci-fi Saturday. Laniakea’s underlying idea is an important thesis in astrobiology. Extraterrestrial civilizations will die unless they find an alternative solution.
When a simulated world begins falling apart. (6:11) “Untitled Earth Sim 64”, Marie has reason to expect trouble when the simulator who explains reality to her cannot get her name right… If Marie has found God amid strange events, as her friend thinks, the God she has found is highly disorganized one.
When God gets distracted — (6:36 min) A clever animated short offers a take on why there is so much violence and chaos in the world
In “Tales from the Multiverse,”Earth is the beta version of the God who has been too busy settling scores between his children, including the devil, to attend to Earth.
The Wild West as seen from another galaxy (6:58 min). Jane Montana must rescue a hostage who is being held hostage by three evil men. But is Montana really what she appears? “Cosmo”Parallel universes are invoked. The story is vividly imaginable by an inhabitant from a greater universe that runs on a slightly different time.
If you met someone in a dream every night… ? (7:08 min.) A sci-fi short asks a paramedic about the nature and meaning of reality. What if a recurring dream you have with another person is the equivalent of reality?
AI attempts creativity! … by kidnapping newborns (7:10 min). The AIs who seek world dominance kidnap wrong children. In “The Shift,”Once the AIs realize the human IS creative, they realize that he must be eliminated. This does not work.
Worst case scenario: AI robots invade to “help”us (7:22 min). A well-meaning AI tries to “rescue”An impressionable child saved from the imminent wipeout of humanity “Cera,”This sci-fi short explores the implications of The Zeroth Law of Robotics (robots should help humanity). Why SHOULD it go well?
The moment sci-fi starts to get serious about colonization (7 minutes). Worth watching but we never learn who the characters are fighting for or why they couldn’t arrange a treaty. The “Ripple Effect”Looks at rebellion against colonization on a new planet, but the production value creates more interest than intellectual content.
For robots, love among the ruins. “Left behind”This animated short features robots searching for a place to exist in a barren, industrial landscape. It is beautifully rendered and has received 275,000 views. Animation solves many of the problems that robots face when trying to be characters.
A fight for the winning ticket (7.35 min) “Here comes Frieda,”A young woman finds a ticket to escape a superstorm in 2040 that has engulfed the planet. But does the way out really exist or is it just a rumor? Or is she just holding onto a fragile hope and hanging on?
If we all depended on a few handfuls of seeds… (7:39 min)
We do. A Norwegian filmmaker has created a short sci-fi movie out of the possible outcome. What if aliens seized the carefully bred seed stock that feeds the world? We would not be controlled by radiation or plagues.
One day the door to the robot’s shop opens (7:44 min) In “Roy,”The robot is suddenly confronted and attacked by another robot. It’s a good short film but, while the special effects are well done, it makes no sense that the characters are supposed to be robots.
An astronaut’s space mission to Infinity (7:55 minutes) After the space station module crashes, the astronaut meets a friendly but mysterious neighbor. Who is he really, anyway? “Flotando,”This award-winning film is a mix of sci-fi, near-death experiences, and is reminiscent of the 1960s Twilight Zone series.
Layers of deceit plague a high-tech call center – Sci-fi Saturday (7:57 min) In “Lifeline,” Jess, locked in, must try to save a competitor’s life when she can only contact artificial intelligence choices that are not programmed to provide the needed assistance. Jess is resourceful in attempting to save Keith’s life, despite the constant AI roadblocks. She doesn’t know how much she knows.
Human psychology in a world that doesn’t have water (8:05 min) “Oasis”This film was made in response to the 2018 Capetown Water Crisis. Good short film — but one can take the “empowered woman”It’s too much. That probably doesn’t really work in a desperate struggle for survival.
Killing people “Likes” on an alien planet: Sci-fi Saturday If only this crisp tale didn’t sound so much like the social media we actually know (8:06 min) “Happy Hunting” follows a social media influencer who murders doomed people to break an online record — and then faces a final, fatal choice.
We have met the aliens and they are… comb jellies. (8:15 min.) An alien life form appears when it appears in “Seedling,”It is very well-constructed. It is a great film to watch for the feeling of isolation that will occur when technology bubble bursts. “comb jelly” space alien.
What if your loved ones age faster than you? – Sci-fi Saturday It’s one of the implications of faster-than-light travel (8:19 min). Should the young Cpt. Bernhard, her very elderly husband, take Bernhard to the new Earth, Gaia. That’s the emotional and ethical dilemma in ARK.
If it’s real, it must be endured. (8:47 min) “It’s Okay?”A futurist technology allows a woman to go back in time with the person she loves. This short sci-fi film plays around with time — and neatly and deftly avoids the common shortcoming of becoming just plain confusing.
“Kiko”: A great, short story with key questions left unanswered. A lonely retail service robot longs to find a place beyond her shop. (9:21 minutes) This is a short but very interesting piece that doesn’t address the question of Charlie’s acquisition of a robot. “want”It may offer something new or different than its programming.
When “The Workplace”It is nothing but (9:32 minutes). The short film begins with a woman reassuring her self, unsettlingly. “I AM the boss.” This sci-fi short will appeal to many who have had a job at the corner of Rat and Race and sense that’s a blessing compared to the alternative.
What if there was serious war over clouds? (9:41 minutes) In a world where technology is still available but water is scarce, such wars might happen. This is the short sci-fi film “Oceanmaker”This movie features pirates who steal precious water from clouds and a pilot who challenges these characters.
If roaches formed a miniature civilization… (9:44 min) The roaches have built a rocket, intending to go to the moon, and their activity wakes up a dormant human. Rocket Roaches is a story in which humans have been forced to retreat into virtual reality. It is up to the cockroaches, who are the smartest species to explore the universe.
In a futurist video game Inmost thoughts are true. (9:53) A family plays the game. “My House,”Acts emerge from long-standing hostilities. The players find it frightening to confront the inner violence they have suppressed for millennia.
Imagine cloning being as simple as shopping. (9:57 min) A couple stumbles on a means of cloning life forms and they get, shall we say, far more than they bargained for… This thought experiment, posed as a film, should make us glad that cloning is technically tricky and used mainly for farm animals.
Five minutes or less
In a Future Market, Time To Live Is Bought, Sold (10:57 min) An employee wants to rebel against the greed and injustice but then she would run out of time … “The Bargain” raises some issues — as a thought experiment — that appear in real life in the illegal organ trade
The Scrap Monster: Scary (11:09 min). If you have never been scared by a Scrap Monster before, this video is for you. “Pinki.”You are clearly not getting the full experience. It’s fun watching a middle class South Korean business executive try to cope with the Scrap Monster. Perhaps it’s an allegory for our big environmental issues.
Imagine if insects could put humans on trial. (11:11 minute) Science+ shows a shrinking inventor facing Ant Justice. In a comic turnabout, the ants, seen face to face, turn out to be roughly like people, of whom — Matt discovers — he has killed nearly 3500.
Can a man travel back in time to fix his past? (11:11 min) It turns out that the old man calling from 2120 doesn’t just want to give his younger self advice; he wants to change the past to prevent tragedy.
“Hey, it’s me”This new approach to time travel relies on the concept that time is unchanging.
What if your AI could talk like a human being? (11:12 minutes) Should you just shut down the AI and leave the building? You should not tell anyone. “Intelligentia”This video has strong performances, and it provides a good introduction for the Turing Test (how would one know if a computer had achieved consciousness?)
When the human race is down to its final offer … (11:23 min) The aliens want Earth’s oceans (have they wrecked their own?) and now the fate of Earth turns on a single question: Is Henry really the world’s worst lawyer? The comic dialogue and gags used by the Final Offer alien corporate lawyer achieve artful comedy in the downbeat human lawyer.
Are stored memories capable of bringing back the dead? A nerd sees a way to bring back his friend Adam from Adam’s girlfriend’s memories (11:45 min) In Adam 2.0, the quest to bring back a dead friend from memory turns on a central question about the nature of human identity.
What would the ruins look like? “Eden”What would you like to be like? — Sci-fi Saturday (11:51 min)
A space drifter discovers the ruins of an advanced civilization while looking for artifacts. The derelict remains of an advanced civilization are sobering — picture our own civilization looking like that.
If your life could be told in five photos — Sci-fi Saturday A young woman accepts five key photos concerning a grandfather she never knew, taken at his death via a futurist technology. (11:58 min) It’s a story about what happens when estrangement and loneliness become final, with the death of the one from whom one has been estranged.
Why you don’t want to duplicate yourself. (12:07 min) “The Unboxing Video”This book offers both philosophy and dark comedy on the question of “What is being?” “oneself” means. A lonely man, while filming himself unboxing an android replicant, discovers just how difficult it is to live without the other. But is he able to make it back?
“Speed of Time”at DUST (12.19 min): A computer geek writing a pizza deliveryHe discovers that his work matters more than he thought. Imagine what happens when an accomplished ground warrior busts in from another time on a quiet family at the breakfast table…
Landing back on Earth as the sole inhabitant — unless we count the cat (12:24 min) In “Origin,”An astronaut from an interstellar space station explores the effects radiation has on Earth.
What good can will power do to nature? (12:29) Despite his career-ending disability, Aaron — as an alternative to accepting life as a bystander — is trying to use his skills to take down a gunrunning gang. Although the climax will be uplifting for those with disabilities, it raises fundamental questions. Maybe they can’t be resolved.
The artist’s android has a surprise in store for him… (12:33 min) He makes the fateful decision to allow her to depart from her programming during a crisis. In “Muse,”Kay, an android that is slowly becoming humanized, raises interesting philosophical questions about being/becoming a human.
Android asks if immortality is really a benefit. (12:43 min.) He claims that he cannot appreciate life if he knows that he will never die. More philosophy than scifi. “Extent”This article explores the question of how much of life’s meaning is derived from the inevitable death of a loved one.
Draper’s chess metaphor seems apt: Life would be endless games where none is intrinsically connected to the previous one in any meaningful way.
Merv is the last person in a radioactively destroyed world. (13:05) He’s been alone so long that the thought of another human being panics him. Merv must confront another survivor. The story takes a classic twist, but we wouldn’t have predicted that. The rest of life continues.
A bot becomes a joker in a world run entirely by robots (13:12 minutes) This is the dull, dystopian atmosphere that Australia has become dominated by robots. “System Error,”It is well done and well worth the time. The story prompted this viewer to consider what thoughts a robot simply couldn’t have without some kind of input from consciousness — always the Hard Problem.
An asteroid lurks near Earth, and it devours time (13.23 min). Or, at the very least, it consumes our perceptions, as one man discovers in “Flyby.”A man wakes up every morning to discover that he is living in his future as the asteroid Chrono-7 clouds Earth.
In “This Time Away,”A robot helps an older person to rediscover their life (13.24 min). The robot is very impressive and it is fun to see how he gets his name. Many people abandon their elderly relatives so it is a nice fantasy to find a helpful robot in the backyard.
The robot attempts to learn about grief (13.37). “Rewind,”An elderly woman purchases a robot to assist her in times of tragedy. Investigating the woman’s unhappiness, the robot discovers more than it was, perhaps, intended to know.
What if next stage evolution children appear? (13:44 min) “Vikaari,”A sci-fi short from Sri Lanka examines the possibilities. The story is a parable about social risks associated with continuous internal warfare.
What if the rescue is actually the worst part? (14:00) Crew members of a crashed spaceship find themselves on a deserted planet with very strange features. This film version of Stephen King’s 1985 short story “Beachworld” blends the science fiction genre and the horror genre — leaving viewers sharply divided.
Can an alternative universe save a lonely little girl? (14:05 minutes) A girl finds it easier to fight space aliens than a brain hemorhage or a feeling of guilt. CARONTE ends as it must — not happily but inevitably, and with at least some sense of redemption.
Can parents bring back an android child they have lost? (14:10 min.) “Article 19-42,” they aren’t even united in their grief; they just think they must “do something”To get back a copy of what they have remembered. They have no spiritual or philosophical resources to fall back upon to avoid this dead end.
What if you could have a fresh start in your life with just two pills? (14.23 min) Would suicide make you feel the same? In “Cam Girl,”A woman whose life is largely going nowhere learns what it means for her to be truly desperate.
A future where dreams are privatized (14.26 minutes) Unfortunately, Carlos doesn’t want in the dream. “I Dream” is to see his missing family again and that’s illegal … More dystopia than science fiction but the post-5G surveillance environment amid mass poverty and oppression is well imagined.
When emergency services are run by AI … (14:38 min) It’s not just that AI doesn’t care; it can’t. This is evident. In “Stuck,”A young woman trapped in an accident at a mine far from Earth receives confusing advice by bots to help her escape.
What if sweet dreams were a distant memory. (14:51 minutes) In a world that is going mad “Don’t Forget To Remember”A young woman may be able to find a cure for insomnia. The biggest challenge in writing about insomnia is to not find a cure. This film is a great example of how to overcome insomnia.
Twenty minutes or less
Could you be reconstructed using your memories? Sci-fi Saturday Would you destroy the digitalized? “you”be considered murder? (15:46 min) “The Final Moments of Karl Brant”This intriguing sci-fi murder mystery crossover raises interesting philosophical points.
When you are the only human left— Sci-fi Saturday. Are you the last human alive? (16:19 min.) “Martha,” the stark reality of two girls on the brink of eternity slowly seeps into the viewer’s imagination.
A man in desperate need contacts his unborn grandchild (17:00 min). “gets the mail”And sends it back via a mysterious mailbox with something from the future that surprises the felons. “The Mailbox,”Set in a mid-century North American Chinatown. The story uses the folk tale to manage the time travel issues.
A one-girl war with the total surveillance state —Sci-fi Saturday (17:24 min) The acting, ambience, and special effects in “Bolero”High quality. “Bolero”This article addresses the urgent topic of total government surveillance. It is imaginable in the United States. It is a daily reality in China.
“Alone”DUST. (18:49 min.) Kaya Torres (Space Engineer), is the only survivor in a black Hole. She contacts an “interstellar penpal”To keep her company until her death. She escapes in a desperate attempt, but then she experiences the amazing implications of time travel.
What does terraforming Mars mean? “Mars”-forming people. (19:14 min) In this award-winner, the underground humans must, according to the terraforming colony’s rules, deny emotion, which pretty much guarantees a story. The “New Mars”Colony is a contradiction: The alleged “better world” created by “science and logic” can’t accommodate the nature of humans.
Can a Robot Discover a Better Planet Than Earth with a Robot? (19:31 min.) The problem is that the robot doesn’t know how to communicate with humans. “Avarya” is governed by Isaac Asimov’s three laws of robotics. After 55 habitable planets, the—by then very old—fellow is beginning to suspect something about the robot’s judgment…
Twenty-five minutes minimum
“Limbo”Profiles a futurist approach towards punishment (24:21). In an attempt to help him learn empathy, the convict must be induced into a coma and live in a vision. For one innocent convict, it’s a nightmare of incomprehensible suffering, from which friends stage a rescue attempt.
Can we live in more places than the current moment? (24:42 minutes) When a tech entrepreneur succeeds at time travel, he becomes trapped in his past mistakes. In “Container,”The time traveler is locked within his lab and can only escape by making dangerous attempts to go back in the past to when the door was open.
“The Beacon”(25:10 min) on DUST. It is refreshingly real, especially the heartbreaking Arctic encounter where the husband grieving discovers the truth. Not to be missed is Mark’s encounter with the bureaucrat from hell.
40 minutes or less
“The Big Nothing”The story combines sci-fi and mystery in a taut drama. (37.54) Combining detective and sci-fi elements takes skill, but this Australian crew succeeds. Arriving at a mining station near Saturn, Detective Lennox must interview three suspects in the captain’s murder. All of them have motives. Who lies?