Passing the Baton

Will Brooker I went into Star Wars with an attitude like Han Solo’s: cynical, jaded, an impress-me air. I came out more like Luke Skywalker: invigorated, thrilled, wide-eyed from my vision of a new world. I say Star Wars. I mean Star Wars; just Star Wars, with no Roman numerals or subtitles before and after.…

Crumbs Buzz

  Andrew Hageman and Ashenafi Beyene | In the rapidly expanding field of critical attention to African speculative/science fiction, old and new, Miguel Llansó’s 2014 post-apocalypse film set in Ethiopia, Crumbs, is emanating a strange magnetic buzz.[1] The rich complexity of the characters, story, landscapes, soundtrack, and themes in this modest-budget independent production reflect the…

The Evolution of Cool in the Work of William Gibson

Diana Hodge |   What is Cool? As a young adult I didn’t care about being pretty or sexy, I wanted to be cool. How was my cool metre calibrated? Neal Cassady and Jack Kerouac were cool, Patti Smith, Debbie Harry and Chrissy Hynde are cool; then I found William Gibson and the Sprawl trilogy;…

image ©Cathryn Perazzo 2015

Dream Baby

Cathryn  Perazzo | Background: In this short piece of fiction, “Dream Baby”, I wanted to consider the membrane between the dreaming and “undreaming” state and the interaction with our actual selves, past and future. What is carried with us from dream to undream, and the reverse? What if the relief of emerging from a disturbing…

Incubation

Alyson Miller | “Incubation” was produced as a result of the images from a pregnancy scan, a 3D capture and a short video of a tiny human being yet to be born, and yet fully formed, and waving to those watching as though it was aware of its performance from the inside. It was a…

Heterocera

Alyson Miller | “Heterocera” emerged from three things: a sudden migration of waves that invaded our home (and tormented the cat); a documentary about insect life as the future for sustainable foods; and a news report about the impact of chemical farming and waste on the environment. Akin to John Wyndham’s Day of the Triffids,…

Some Thoughts on the Rise of SuperStar Visual Effects

Alex Funke I have been thinking recently about the way visual effects have moved from a tool to advance a filmic story, to a point where they have as much significance as the actors themselves. I wondered how this came about. What is contained in that buzzword, visual effects? For this discussion, let’s say that…

Secret Origins: The evolving science of superheroes

Liam Burke Following the record-breaking success of X-Men (Singer) in 2000 comic-book heroes began filling the cinematic skies. These films appealed to a wide audience by deftly blending cinematic conventions including the Western’s vigilante archetype, the crime movie’s milieu, and the heightened flourishes of the action film. One of the most potent elements in this…

‘It’s Bigger on the Inside’: Blockbuster Science Fiction TV

Stacey Abbott   In their announcement about their three-month retrospective and celebration Science Fiction: Days of Fear and Wonder, the British Film Institute declared: ‘The BFI unveils a major celebration of film and television’s original blockbuster genre’ (2014). Through this statement, the BFI suggests an indelible association between the genre and the notion of a…

Medial Singularity and Transmedial Blockbusters

Tanya Krzywinska and Douglas Brown Through a convergence of technology, brand marketing and aesthetics, we are close to a point of singularity within the entertainment industry. This is evident in the increasingly transmedial nature of contemporary SF blockbuster economics. Diversity is still somewhat in evidence but fading with the increasingly common implementation of transmedial franchises.…