Short Film: Rakka

If you’re a fan of science-fiction and short film, you’d probably already heard about Neill Blomkamp’s latest venture Oats Studios. A production company that labels their output as ‘experimental short films’ and is described as a “collective of ideas that feeds the internet” (in this cryptic What is Oats video), just as news was spreading about their aims and goals, Blomkamp and his team unexpectedly dropped their first short Rakka online.

A typically Blomkampian piece, Rakka envisions an Earth (only three years in the future) now under the control of strange reptilian overlords. Describing mankind’s existing as now akin to “pests” or “vermin”, these alien invaders came to this world to exterminate humans and harvest our lands to grow their own crops. Rakka is the story of a small group of soldiers who band together in one last attempt to fight off this merciless species.

Written (with Thomas Sweterlitsch) and directed by Blomkamp, though Rakka borrows from several existing Sci-fi stories/films (it even stars Sigourney Weaver), there’s certainly enough here to make it feel like a distinct entry to the genre. And as you might expect in a Blomkamp production, what’s lacking in narrative originality, is more than made for up with its jaw-dropping production. Rakka isn’t just another FX-piece, it many cases its CGI and production design doesn’t just feel akin to those of a feature, at times they feel above and beyond.

With Rakka representing Volume 1 of what Oats Studios hopes is an ongoing series that produces at least two more volumes, Blomkamp and his team admit that the creation of its debut short ‘required immense resources’ and are now hoping to ‘receive funding sourced directly from our audience, as we establish a studio fuelled by pure creativity and passion‘.

source: shortoftheweek.com by Neil Blomkamp

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