future

2047: Virtual Revolution (2017)

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A bounty hunter finds himself torn between his job and the fate of the world in this sci-fi film that blends elements from Blade Runner and The Matrix.

It is the year 2047. Ninety percent of the world has been known as the Connected. The Connected are the citizens who find their daily live in a virtual reality. Nash is a local bounty hunter who also is one of the Connected. His virtual world comes in the form of medieval times. On top of that, Nash is still reeling for the death of his girlfriend Helena. When Nash learns that there have been deaths in the virtual world, he has been assigned to find out who is responsible.

The ones responsible are a band known as the Necromancers. It is unclear why the Necromancers are killing in the virtual world but Synternis Corporation wants answers. As Nash begins his investigation, he finds himself beaten on some occasions but after successfully getting rid of some of the Necromancers. However, when a chance encounter with the leader of the Necromancers reveals something he never imagined, Nash finds himself conflicted between what truth is real and what truth is fiction. His decision may change the fate of the world as we know it.

From the mind of Guy Roger-Duvert comes this film that is highly influenced by sci-fi classics with a dash of French-flavored sci-fi epics that in its 92 minute running time starts out rather confusing but soon finds its meshing in the second half of the film. The film starts out like Blade Runner with the character of Nash, played by Mike Dopud, narrating the tale about a revolution but begins with how 90% of the world is now living through virtual reality and it has caused the non-connected to live virtually like thugs.

Jane Badler, star of the hit 80’s mini-series V, stars as Dina, Nash’s handler and leader of the Synternis Company, who just wants one thing and that’s to ensure Nash does his job. It may seem at first that Nash’s only ally in the investigation is hacker Morel, played by French actor Maximillien Poullein while Kaya Blocksage plays the leader of the Necromancers, whose confrontation with Nash leads to our hero having to make a choice.

The virtual reality sequences are nicely handled and provide a lot of action.  Nash’s world of virtual reality is that of medieval hero Swal, played by martial artist and stuntman Emilien De Falco but in one pivotal scene, he does take the avatar of a female futuristic warrior named Kate, played by Petra Silander. The lines between the real world and virtual reality do bring a sense of confusion at times but the second half helps smooth things over and brings quite an interesting ending.

2047: Virtual Revolution is not a bad indie sci-fi, but is clearly a middle of the road film. If you can get past the confusion of the real world and virtual reality, then stick around for the second half to get a full understanding of the film.

WFG RATING: C+

Wild Eye Releasing presents a Lidderdalei production. Director: Guy-Roger Duvert. Producer: Guy-Roger Duvert. Writer: Guy-Roger Duvert. Cinematography: Cyril Bron. Editing: Sylvain Franchet.

Cast: Mike Dopud, Jane Badler, Jochen Hägele, Maximillien Poullein, Kaya Blacksage, Petra Silander, Emilien De Falco, Nicolas Van Beveren.

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Realive (2017)

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A cryogenically frozen man revives with high hopes in this sci-fi drama from filmmaker Mateo Gil.

Marc Jarvis is an advertising executive who has learned he has terminal throat cancer. Learning he has just over a year left to live, he goes as far as try to end his relationship with longtime girlfriend Naomi, who had met with her ex, who had hoped he would get back together with her. She chooses Marc over her ex and decides to help him through his ordeal. Marc soon reads a story about cryogenics and the possibility of curing diseases as a result. Marc decides to take part in the experiment.

Awakening 70 years later, Marc is revived by a team led by Dr. Victor West. Marc undergoes both physical therapy and other brands of experiments in hopes that he will be able to be cured of his cancer. This includes wearing a pair of glasses that enable him to see images from his past. He even goes as far as bonding with Elizabeth, Dr. West’s assistant, to the point of possibly falling for her. However, as Marc continues his therapy, he begins to think that maybe everything is not as it seems. When Marc learns the reality of what has endured, he must come to a decision that could change his life forever.

Mateo Gil has come up with an interesting science fiction-drama whose title can be said to have a double meaning. If you break the title Realive down, it can be said “Re-alive”, which pertains to the central character of Marc being revived from his cryogenically frozen state. However, if one really thinks about it, Realive does have a bit of a combination close to sounding like “real life”, which definitely pertains to the entire basis of the film.

This is truly of those films you cannot miss even a second of, or perhaps it will not make sense. The reason is that our central character of Marc not only takes us to his present state in the future, but also goes as far back as his being born, which is shown as if we’re watching Nova’s The Miracle of Life, as the film’s opening up to his childhood days in a series of flashbacks that aren’t specifically told in a chronological order. This might cause some detractors as a result, but it really shouldn’t because the viewer is engaged in Marc’s journey all while he attempts to find out whether he will be able to be cured and live a long life.

Tom Hughes performs really well as Marc, our central character. We get to see him in both our present day and in the future self, in which he looks like he could be coming out of The Matrix, which perhaps played a bit of influence in the film in terms of the use of a plug in the back of the next and the real state of the patients after their revival. Charlotte Le Bon makes for great support as Marc’s love interest in the future with Oona Chaplin bringing the dramatics as Marc’s love interest in our present day. Barry Ward’s Doctor West is not so much a bad guy, but someone who is discovered to have been able to revive patients in hopes of actually doing what Marc is hoping. However, we soon learn that Dr. West may be the type to perhaps bring Marc’s hopes up as a cover for something more pleasing to the facility’s funders and yet, brings a more grounded perspective on things.

Realive’s double meaning makes for quite an interesting sci-fi drama, emphasizing on the drama and less on the sci-fi aspect. However, it does make one think that just because it’s the future, can everything be as what is expected?

WFG RATING: B

Syfy Films presents an Arcadia Motion Pictures production in association with Achaman Films AIE, Canal+ España, Noodles Productions, Scope Pictures, and Televisión España. Director: Mateo Gil. Producers: Ibon Cormenzana, Igansi Estapé, and Jérôme Vidal. Writer: Mateo Gil. Cinematography: Pau Esteve Birba. Editing: Guillero de la Cal.

Cast: Tom Hughes, Charlotte Le Bon, Oona Chaplin, Barry Ward, Julio Perillán, Rafael Cebrián, Bruno Sevilla, Daniel Horvath, Alex Hafner, Godeliv Van den Brandt, Melina Matthews.


This film will be released in select theaters on September 29 followed by a VOD and Digital HD release on October 3.

TRAILER: Realive

From the co-writer of the 1997 film Abre Los Ojos (remade as Vanilla Sky) comes this tense sci-fi thriller that will be released in theaters in September.

Realive focuses on Marc Jarvis, a man who is diagnosed with a disease and is given a short time to live. Unable to accept his own end, he decides to freeze his body. Sixty years later, in the year 2084, he becomes the first cryogenically frozen man to be revived in history. Marc discovers a startling future, but the biggest surprise is that his past has accompanied him in unexpected ways.

Tom Hughes, Charlotte Le Bon, Oona Chaplin, and Barry Ward star in the film, written and directed by Mateo Gil.

SyFy Films will release the film in theaters on September 29 followed by a VOD and Digital HD release on October 3.

TRAILER: Alien – Reign of Man

Not to be confused with the classic sci-fi franchise, this indie sci-fi thriller from writer/director Justin Price brings a new brand of alien and brings a bit of possible time travel.

Stranded on a distant planet, a team must fight aliens and activate a machine meant to restore Earth to a time before its downfall.

Deanna Grace Congo, Torrei Hart, Khu, and Cameron White star. Alien: Reign of Man comes from Uncork’d Entertainment on VOD platforms August 1 and a DVD release on November 14.

Atomica (2017)

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2017, SyFy Films/Lifeboat Productions

Director:
Dagen Merrill
Producers:
Jaime Burke
Vahan Paretchan
Writers:
Kevin Burke
Federico Fernandez-Arnesto
Adam Gyngell
Cinematography:
Timothy A. Burton
Editing:
Joseph Ettinger
Eric Frith

Cast:
Sarah Habel (Abby)
Dominic Monaghan (Robinson)
Tom Sizemore (Dr. Zek)
Phil Austin (Rhine)
Tony Doupe (Father)
Hahn Cho (David)
Jennifer Spriggs (Margot)

In this futuristic drama, a young woman’s simple attempts to bring back communications get more complicated than she expects.

Abby Dixon, a safety inspector and chief technical officer, has been called upon to go to an isolated nuclear power plant, responsible for energy within an area. The communications of the plant have been shut down and she must head there to resolve the problem. After being dropped off, she arrives at the facility and runs into one of the employees, Robinson.

Robinson is very wary of Abby, but intends to help her with her issue. When Abby asks for the location of the plant’s facilitator, Dr. Zek, Robinson attempts to constantly avoid the issue. However, when Abby finds Dr. Zek in the unbreathable “red area”, she makes a successful attempt to save him. However, after the rescue, Abby begins to notice very strange behaviors from both Robinson and Dr. Zek as the truth behind the communications shutdown slowly begin to unravel.

This film is not so much a typical sci-fi movie but more of a drama in the vein of films like Solaris amongst others. It is a more drama-filled film that happens to be set in the future. The only flaw of the film is that is does tend to drag in the middle, but brings redemption in the third act, where the truth behind the shutdown is revealed and it brings a little bit of shock value that may be seen as predictable but is at the same twisting to good effect.

Sarah Habel, currently seen in the CW’s Riverdale, is pretty good as the stern Abby, who just wants to get her mission accomplished so she can return home. Little do we know she has a bit of a past that causes her to act the way she does in the present day. Dominic Monaghan of Lord of the Rings and Lost brings a bit of chaos to the mix as Robinson, the unstable employee at the power plant. There is a scene where in an attempt to talk to Abby, goes on and on about trying drugs and it tends to be quite laughable. It makes you wonder if Habel, who in the scene is clearly calm, actually cracked up while making the film. As for Tom Sizemore, he makes the most of his screen time, which seems quite limited in the pivotal role of plant facilitaror Dr. Zek, who may have a skeleton or two in his closet as does both Abby and Robinson.

Atomica is not a complete waste of time, but it does have the age-old “big drag” in the middle but thankfully offers redemption in its big reveal and Dominic Monaghan’s unstable Robinson as well as Sarah Habel’s Abby makes this pretty watchable for a futuristic drama.

WFG RATING: B-

SyFy Films will be releasing this film in select theaters on March 17 followed by a VOD/Digital HD release on March 21.

Total Recall (1990)

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Arnold Schwarzenegger learns that his world is not what it seems in this sci-fi classic film from Dutch director Paul Verhoeven.

It’s the year 2084. Architect Douglas Quaid has had nightmares about life on Mars with a mysterious brunette woman. Upon awakening, Quaid’s wife Lori finds herself concerned about the mysterious woman in his nightmares but he successfully blows her off. Meanwhile, he has heard about Mars, where there is now life under Mayor Vilas Cohaagen, who has the population intact in a shielded area from the atmosphere. Yet news of a revolution led by Kuato has been heard in an attempt to overthrow Cohaagen.

Quaid goes to an experiment known as Recall, where he can experience a vacation like no other and live out a fantasy. He chooses the secret agent fantasy, but before the injected memory can be placed in Quaid, the architect undergoes a change. Shocked to learn that nothing around him is actually what is seen, Quaid learns the hard truth. He was once an agent for Cohaagen named Karl Hauser, whose memory was erased. Going to Mars, Quaid finds Melina, who is the mysterious woman in his dreams. Together, they learn the truth about Kuato’s reasoning for revolution and why Cohaagen wants nothing more than total control. Now, Quaid and Melina must help Kuato bring peace to Mars but to do so, they must stop Cohaagen and his goons.

Inspired by a Philip K. Dick short story, this film is quite interesting not only because of its cast, but its sci-fi inspired storyline as well as the very engaging special effects make this a very good Ah-nuld film.

Arnold Schwarzenegger is engaging as architect Douglas Quaid, who soon learns his repressed memories come back as both a positive and negative. The positive involved the fact he finds himself all of a sudden having the skills to defend himself while he finds himself hunted down by the likes of Michael Ironside as Cohaagen’s right hand man Richter. In a nice little twist to the story that happens pretty quickly, Sharon Stone’s Lori is revealed herself to be not only Quaid’s faux wife, but she is Richter’s real wife and holds her own when needed to fight.

Ronny Cox, who appeared in Verhoeven’s hit 1987 film RoboCop, once again shines as a lead villain who is all talk until the finale in the form of Cohaagen. When one says all talk, he is the powerful man who hires muscle and serves himself as a last resort to do the action himself in the finale. Schwarzenegger gets ample support in Rachel Ticotin, who plays the mysterious brunette in Arnie’s dreams who turns out to have history with the repressed version of his Quaid.

Another highlight of the film aside from the action and story is Rob Bottin’s special effects. Sometimes they give off a “how is that humanly impossible”, such as the scene where we see Arnie (in a video) telling himself how to remove the bug implanted in his skull. The atmosphere scenes are quite gross-out as in the film’s opening scene, Quaid’s dream, shows the viewer the result of being in Mars’ atmosphere where there is no breathable air. It is likely to give you chills while in a fun scene, we seen Quaid in disguise as a completely different person upon arrival in Mars reveals his true self in such a crazy scene but with fun special effects.

The film was remade in 2012 with Colin Farrell in the Ah-nuld role and was not as well received as this original.

Total Recall is a wild sci-fi action ride with Arnold Schwarzenegger leading the way with some fun yet at-times gross out special effects that enhance the film. Definitely one to check out!

WFG RATING: A

A Carolco Pictures Production. Director: Paul Verhoeven. Producers: Buzz Feitshans and Ronald Shusett. Writers: Jon Povill, Dan O’Bannon, Ronald Shusett, Gary Goldman; based on the short story “We Can Remember It For You Wholesale” by Philip K. Dick. Cinematography: Jost Vacano. Editing: Carlos Puente and Frank J. Urioste.

Cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger, Rachel Ticotin, Sharon Stone, Ronny Cox, Michael Ironside, Marshall Bell, Mel Johnson Jr., Michael Champion, Roy Brocksmith.