"I would know if I was a replicant!" We're always on the lookout for good sci-fi short films. Tears In The Rain is an intriguing little short from South Africa that is clearly directly inspired by Blade Runner, set in the world of Philip K. Dick's novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?. This short was made on a budget of only $1500 which is crazy impressive, and it looks great. I wish there was more taking place outside on the streets, but it's still cool to see a well-made short film set in this world, and I can always appreciate some fascinating dialogue. This gets deep into the themes from the original novel about free will and whether or not our memories are real, and if we would know that we're a robot, or are just designed to think we're real.
"Five little Rangers - how cute." Lionsgate has unveiled another brand new 60-second trailer for the Power Rangers movie, directed by Dean Israelite, in theaters in March - about a month from now. The full trailer hit just last month, but this new trailer has even more footage - including a few scenes with Rita Repulsa gearing up to take on the cute little Power Rangers. The cast is lead by: Naomi Scott as The Pink Ranger, Becky G. as The Yellow Ranger, Ludi Lin as The Black Ranger, RJ Cyler as The Blue Ranger, and Dacre Montgomery as The Red Ranger. Also starring Bryan Cranston as Zordon, Bill Hader as the voice of Alpha 5, Elizabeth Banks as Rita Repulsa, as well as David Denman, Sarah Grey, Emily Maddison, and Caroline Cave. I'm not sure if this will be any good in the end, but it does look like it'll be fun to see.
"They created her, but they cannot control her." Paramount has just debuted the second official trailer for Rupert Sanders' live-action Ghost in the Shell movie, based on the original manga series. We've already seen one trailer and the Super Bowl spot, but this new one is even better. Scarlett Johansson stars as "The Major", a "one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid" who leads an elite task force as part of Section 9. She goes on an epic search to find a hacker criminal who wants to destroy all the technology at Hanka Robotics. Also starring Michael Pitt, Juliette Binoche, Michael Wincott, Rila Fukushima, Chin Han, plus filmmaker Takeshi Kitano, Joseph Naufahu, with Pilou Asbæk as Batou. It looks like they're polishing the VFX and it looks great so far. Plus it's awesome to see they're including the tank fight in this. Fire it up.
"Are you recording this?" Sony has launched a new trailer along with the official Super Bowl TV spot for the sci-fi space thriller Life, from director Daniel Espinosa. This is the movie set on a space station where a group of astronauts and scientists end up discovering some kind of "life" after catching a rogue satellite, but it turns malicious quick. The first trailer was surprisingly attention grabbing, and this new TV spot promises some serious space horror scares and screams. The impressive cast includes Jake Gyllenhaal with Ryan Reynolds, Rebecca Ferguson, Hiroyuki Sanada, Ariyon Bakare, and Olga Dihovichnaya. Sony's release of Life has also moved up to this March, from May originally. You don't want to miss this new spot.
"They did not save your life. They stole it." Paramount has revealed their official Super Bowl TV spot for Rupert Sanders' Ghost in the Shell movie, a few days ahead of its premiere on Sunday in the big game. Scarlett Johansson stars as "The Major", a "one-of-a-kind human-cyborg hybrid" who leads an elite task force as part of Section 9. She goes on an epic search to find a hacker criminal who wants to destroy all the technology at Hanka Robotics. Also starring Michael Pitt, Juliette Binoche, Michael Wincott, Rila Fukushima, Chin Han, filmmaker Takeshi Kitano, Joseph Naufahu, with Pilou Asbæk as Batou. This TV spot features only a few new shots, the rest of it is footage we've seen from the first official trailer, but it still looks badass. And they finally give us a very quick look at the tank she has to fight. Boot her up.
"This is starting to freak me out… None of this makes any sense." Screen Media Films has unveiled a trailer for a mysterious low-key sci-fi titled Bokeh, starring Maika Monroe (from It Follows, ID: Resurgence) & Matt O'Leary (from Live Free or Die Hard, The Lone Ranger) as a young couple on a trip to Iceland. After exploring around, they wake up one morning to discover that everyone is gone. They attempt to figure out what happened and start wondering if they're the only ones for a reason. The cast includes Arnar Jónsson and Gunnar Helgason. This looks pretty cool, I'm always intrigued by sci-fi like this. Have to check it out.
"It's Morphin' time!" Lionsgate has debuted a second trailer for their new Power Rangers movie, directed by Dean Israelite (Project Almanac). This definitely looks like a lot like Chronicle with a bit of Iron Man, but instead of a billionaire engineer, we have five high school kids who end up gaining superpowers and stepping into colorful sci-fi suits. The cast is lead by: Naomi Scott as The Pink Ranger, Becky G. as The Yellow Ranger, Ludi Lin as The Black Ranger, RJ Cyler as The Blue Ranger, and Dacre Montgomery as The Red Ranger. Also starring Bryan Cranston as Zordon, Bill Hader as the voice of Alpha 5, Elizabeth Banks as Rita Repulsa, as well as David Denman, Sarah Grey, Emily Maddison, and Caroline Cave. This actually looks more entertaining than I was expecting, but I'm still not sure if it's going to be any good.
In our near future. Over the weekend, A24 debut a mysterious teaser trailer for an untitled film - without any information or details about what it is or what it's for or anything. After some sneaky investigation, The Film Stage discovered that the trailer is actually for a short film playing at Sundance 2017 called Toru. The footage has a sci-fi edge to it and shows the life of a baby living in a futuristic Japan. Early speculation was that this might be Shane Carruth's new sci-fi film, but apparently not. It's actually a very unique short about sci-fi tech that allows a baby to experience a full life in a matter of days. Some are speculating that maybe A24 is developing a feature, or just releasing the short, either way they've definitely got our attention.
A forest, a symbol, a dream of humanity. Fire up this fantastic French sci-fi short film titled The Edge, from director Simon Saulnier. After playing at film festivals throughout 2015 and 2016, the short has finally arrived online. The Edge is a contained sci-fi story following the journey of a young girl tracking down the thieves who stole from her something she cares about. It runs about 13 minutes, but is worth watching for the impressive attention to detail and the compelling, mysterious story of a renegade woman. The score by Alex Cortès (Eden Log, Martyrs, Arès) is also stellar. This might be one of the best shorts we'll see this year.
"His heart can't handle our gravity, it's too risky!" STX Entertainment has debuted one more trailer for the cheesy romantic drama The Space Between Us, about a boy born on Mars who returns to Earth and falls in love with a young woman from Colorado. We've seen so many trailers for this already, and the film was delayed from being release last fall, until this February (supposedly to distance itself from the release of two other big space movies last December - Rogue One and Passengers). Asa Butterfield plays the boy, and Britt Robertson plays the girl he falls for and chases all over Earth. The full cast includes Carla Gugino, Gary Oldman, BD Wong, Janet Montgomery, and Jenny Gabrielle. Will this end up being worth the wait? I'm not so sure, but hopefully they won't delay the release any further. I just want to see this already.
One of our favorite movies of 2016 is Arrival, the science fiction thriller from Denis Villeneuve. Aside from a brilliant script by Eric Heisserer, the film contains stunning visuals, in part thanks to cinematographer Bradford Young, but also thanks to some excellent VFX work. For anyone curious to see how they brought everything to life, including the giant spaceship and their activity inside of it, Oblique FX has released a demo reel highlighting their work. Another VFX company, called RodeoFX, has also launched a page with photos showing before-after shots. It's amazing to see how much of this was filmed with blue screen, yet it feels so real. Seriously impressive. Always so cool to see these kind of VFX breakdowns for big sci-fi movies.
"Meet George Jetson!" For years and years, we've been writing about the hope/possibility of one day seeing a live-action Jetsons movies. At one point, Robert Rodriguez was attached to a version in development at Warner Bros, but it never came together. Now we can get a different glimpse at what a movie might be like. Engineering firm Arconic hired filmmaker Justin Lin (Annapolis, Tokyo Drift, Fast & Furious 4-6, Star Trek Beyond) to make a 60-second commercial for them reimagining The Jetsons set in the year 2062. It's actually pretty cool to see, but it's clearly just an advertisement (showing off lots of engineering innovation) and they also clearly only have the rights to The Jetsons song, so it's all just for fun. Still worth a quick look.