Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival Announces 2020 Lineup

The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival has unveiled the full lineup for its eighth annual season. Held at the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, NY, the festival runs from March 4-8, 2020. Events include film screenings and premieres, panel discussions, virtual reality demonstrations, and the launch of a new screenplay competition aimed at enhancing the filmmaking experience for audiences. As a platform for critical thinkers who explore the benefits and obstacles of science and technology, the festival showcases a variety of themes associated with independent storytelling.

The festival maintains its annual presence in New York, this time screened exclusively in the borough of Queens. “There is a strong cultural scene and appreciation for science fiction here,” said Daniel Abella, the founder and director of the event. “Everyone has been impacted by the advantages and disadvantages of this new world we live in and that knowledge strengthens the overall experience of the festival.”

Festivities begin March 4 with U.S. Premiere of the feature film Imperial Blue directed by Dan Moss and produced by David Cecil and Semulema Daniel Katenda. The film, which follows a drug smuggler on the quest to locate a sacred African herb that gives the power of prophecy, will be followed by a discussion with filmmakers.

A short film block runs on March 5 with the presentation of A Poem in Bamboo directed by Xufei Wu and Chan Yao Chang, an atmospheric study of a beautiful mansion plagued by strange noises. The program continues with titles such as Jesca Prudencio’s American Quartet, a revealing look at a small town bitterly divided when a young Muslim-American woman puts herself at risk when she shares her private, digitized memories with strangers in an attempt to triumph over hate, and Tim Hall’s Memory Unit about the mysterious hospitalization of an Alzheimer’s patient.

On Friday, March 6th, science fiction and horror shorts take center stage with Izzy Ezagui’s Good Head about a man immobilized in a strange room, and Jason Rogan’s Stalag III-C about a U.S. paratrooper in WWII who leads a daring escape from a Nazi POW camp and encounters even more evil beyond prison walls. Then, Chris Levitus greets viewers with a man bleeding from a hole in his chest in The Wound and Warren DiFranco Hsu brings forth a dystopian world in Obsolete Model, where the past must be changed to save the future.

The lineup on Saturday, March 7th features director Gisella Bustios, renowned scientist Dr. Ronald Mallet, and lecturer WandaGregoryon hand for the screening of A Brief History of Time Travel. The documentary takes viewers on a journey through the origins of time travel and its influence on the science fiction genre with commentary from distinguished members of the science community. The day continues with a block of shorts influenced by the work Philip K. Dick including Hekla Egilsdottir’s Beyond the Doorabout the influence of a peculiar cuckoo clock and the U.S. Premiere of After Ray directed by Natasha Halevi about a modified human struggling with memory loss. Also screening is the poignant Wide Awake in Bridgewater directed by Erik Lee and produced by Mark Lynch about a man who rediscovers the love of his life fifty years after her disappearance.

International sci-fi shorts starts the final day of the festival on Sunday, March 8th with the NYC Premiere of Eva – A Crispr Story directed by Puneet Bharill about a group of researchers confronting the unknown upon the implementation of a new technology. Further shorts include Christopher Armstrong’s Memory Man about a future society where psychic abilities are outlawed and Charles De Lauzirika’s Love Bite that shows the ramifications of a couple’s deadly bet during a zombie apocalypse. The night continues with two feature film presentations beginning with Anya directed by Jacob Akira Okada and Carylanna Taylor about a newlywed couple’s journey to parenthood that catapults them into a genetics mystery that threatens the future of humanity. Erin Berry’s Majic, which follows the discovery of a secret U.S. spy agency founded after the 1947 UFO incident in Roswell, is the festival’s closing night film. Filmmakers and guests of both features will be available for panels.

Expanding its outlook to incorporate the many stages of the filmmaking process into festival events, a screenplay competition has been introduced. “The screenplay is the beating heart of a film,” said Abella, who developed the category to help audiences value films beyond their visual aspects onscreen. “Our plan is to emphasize the importance and necessity of good storytelling.” The category semifinalists for Best Sci-Fi, Best Sci-Fi Prototyping, and Best Supernatural screenplays were chosen based on story, characterization, originality, readability, and attention to detail. “For sci-fi prototyping, the emphasis is on the design and architecting of an entire future world from scratch. Attention to detail and the impact of its surroundings is paramount,” said Abella. “For the sci-fi and supernatural categories, our focus is more on the characters themselves and how their inner world is affected by science, technology, nature, and politics.” Winners will be announced on Sunday, March 8th.

The festival will also continue its popular virtual reality demonstrations on March 7-8. Guests will experience Davey Jose’s Living with Spinal Cord Injury from the perspective of future patients restored to health by “the cure.” The Inner World of Miss Qdirected by David Wesemann will help users locate the whereabouts of a woman’s missing ghost and body.

As the festival remains committed to presenting innovative and thought-provoking independent films, Abella hopes audiences recognize the relevance of Philip K. Dick’s work. “PKD had his finger on the pulse of today’s society and our future,” he said. “His work resonates so well because he explored themes of artificial intelligence, the surveillance state, and the genetic modification of humans. He established himself as an icon of science fiction, which is truly the science of tomorrow.”

The festival film schedule follows the jump.

Continue reading

2019 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival Winners

The 2019 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival has announced the award winners for its seventh annual event. The festival was held as a bi-coastal gathering in New York and California with 11 films recognized for their distinctive filmmaking styles and quality storytelling.

“Holding the festival on both coasts contributed to a sense of connection to Philip K. Dick,” said founder and director Daniel Abella. “It was a fitting honor to hold the event in communities respected for their cultural influence.” Following two dates in Queens and Manhattan, the festival traveled to Los Angeles, the city and year of the 1982 film Blade Runner based on Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, and Santa Ana which served as the writer’s final residence. “These are cities that resonate well with PKD’s work,” said Abella. “Through well-attended screenings, we raised awareness of his life and created memorable experiences for all.”

Noting Philip K. Dick’s ability to connect with readers through political, technological and social themes, the festival highlighted the critical narratives of its official selections. “In a world with disinformation, surveillance and paranoia, PKD showed us that science fiction is the science of tomorrow,” said Abella.

Congratulations to the award winners of The 2019 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival:

BEST PHILIP K. DICK FEATURE
Volition (2018) — World Premiere
Director: Tony Dean Smith
Run Time/Country: 101 min, Canada
Synopsis: Blending genres, this mind-bending sci-fi thriller about a man afflicted with clairvoyance who tries to change his fate when a series of events leads to a vision of his own imminent murder. But as he sets out to avoid his certain death, he comes to see that his pre-sentient condition is not quite what it seems. Starring Adrian Glynn McMorran (Arrow), Magda Apanowicz (The Green Inferno) and Aleks Paunovic (Van Helsing).

BEST SCIENCE FICTION FEATURETTE
Destroyer of Worlds
(2018)
Director: Samual Dawes
Run Time/Country: 44 min, UK
Synopsis: A precocious teenager must reluctantly leave his life in 1954 behind when his father makes the most devastating discovery to date: Leap Theory.

BEST HORROR FEATURE
The Dark Red
(2018)
Director: Dan Bush
Run Time/Country: 101 min, USA
Synopsis: A young woman is committed to a psychiatric hospital and claims her newborn was stolen by a dark cult.

BEST PHILIP K. DICK SHORT ADAPTATION
Beyond the Door
(2018)
Director: Em Johnson
Run Time/Country: 20 min, USA
Synopsis: A mother brings home a cuckoo clock to decorate the baby’s room, unbeknownst that the cuckoo clock has the ability to love and hate just like humans. The cuckoo clock tests the couple’s love by mimicking the presence of their deceased son.

BEST SCIENCE FICTION SHORT
I Am the Doorway
(2018)
Director: Simon Pearce
Run Time/Country: 20 min, UK
Synopsis: After a journey to investigate desolate Pluto, an astronaut returns home a shattered man. He sees eyes forcing their way through the skin of his hands, eyes that distort his friends and the landscape itself into monstrous visions. Believing himself the doorway to alien invasion and gruesome murder, he must take desperate action. Based on the short story by Stephen King.

BEST ESCHATON, SINGULARITY AND BEYOND SHORT
Mise En Abyme
(2018)
Director: Edoardo Smerilli
Run Time/Country: 11 min, Italy
Synopsis: An eccentric and aristocratic gentleman devotes most of his time to a bizarre activity. Obsessed by beauty, he wanders everyday in the wood nearby the city, hunting the most rare butterflies. Once captured, he frames them and put in a massive and disturbing collection. He will soon realize to be himself part of a bigger collection.

BEST PERSON OF COLOR SCI-FI SHORT
Sereget
(2018)
Director: Dempsey Tillman
Run Time/Country: 13 min, USA
Synopsis: An emotionally detached husband (with a child on the way) gets a rude awakening when aliens invade his home and target his family.

BEST HORROR SHORT
Post Mortem Mary
(2017)
Director: Joshua Long
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Australia
Synopsis: A girl and her mother run a post mortem photography business in 1840’s Australia.

BEST DOCUMENTARY
Nobody Dies in Longyearbyen
(2017)
Director: David Freid
Run Time/Country: 9 min, Norway
Synopsis: Permafrost in a northern island of Norway is affecting Global Seed Vault, infectious diseases like anthrax, influenza and global warming.

BEST ANIMATION
Uncle Griot
(2018)
Director: Paul Charisse
Run Time/Country: 6 min, UK
Synopsis: A young girl takes her uncle for a walk.

BEST TRAILER
Tatu
(2018)
Director: Garcerón Alejo
Run Time/Country: 2 min, Argentina
Synopsis: Monster robots in a car junkyard battle it out.

BEST WEB SERIES
Subverse
(2018)
Director: Joseph White
Run Time/Country: 10 min, USA
Synopsis: In an alternate reality where everyone spends all their time indoors staring at computer screens, a man agrees to go on a date in the ‘outside’ world but it doesn’t go well. Filled with self-loathing, he returns home and plunges headfirst into a drunken, hallucinogenic trip through the dark net.

The 2019 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival was held at Museum of the Moving Image (36-01 35th Ave, Astoria, NY 11106) on March 7th; Producers Club (358 W 44th St, New York, NY 10036)on March 9th; Echo Park Film Center (1200 N Alvarado St, Los Angeles, CA 90026) on March 14th; Ebell Club (625 French St, Santa Ana, CA 92701) on March 15th and March 17th; Orange County Museum of Art (1661 W Sunflower Ave, Santa Ana, CA 92704) on March 16th. The full schedule is available here.

2019 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival Goes Bi-Coastal

The annual Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival for the first time since its inception will hold a bi-coastal gathering with films, premieres and panels in New York City, Los Angeles and Santa Ana, CA. Independent filmmakers will have a platform to tackle a variety of themes that empower the narratives of Philip K. Dick, whose work continues to serve as a profound mark on the literary and entertainment worlds.

The festival will open in New York City on Thursday, March 7th and Saturday, March 9th. “We have developed a strong following here,” said Daniel Abella, the founder and director of the festival. “Our fans have become loyal supporters of our films and platform so we acknowledge their support by bringing back great sci-fi year after year.” Features include Saku Sakamoto’s ARAGNE: Sign of Vermillion about a young woman’s discovery of a mysterious class of insects and the U.S. premiere of Taking Tiger Mountain Revisited, the remastered version of Kent Smith and Tom Huckabee’s post-apocalyptic 1983 film starring Bill Paxton. Then, a lone survivor searches for answers after the human race vanishes in the World Premiere of John Norby’s Assimilation.

The West Coast edition of the festival will run in partnership with Media Arts Santa Ana (MASA), a non-profit organization that supports its community’s cultural empowerment through special resources and initiatives. Dick, the festival’s namesake, was a resident of the city in his final years and wrote several of his last major works there. It will help create discussion about how Santa Ana and Orange County influenced Philip K. Dick’s vision and celebrate one of Santa Ana’s most treasured and influential artists.

Festivities begin on Thursday, March 14th in Los Angeles. “Blade Runner is set in L.A. in 2019,” said Abella when referring to the 1982 adaptation of Philip K. Dick’s novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? “There is no better honor than by holding the festival in the very city and year depicted in one of the greatest sci-fi films of all time.” Screening titles include Matthew Evan Balz’s Corvus, which follows a woman’s perilous efforts to build a machine capable of hypnosis and the depiction of extant technology in Emily Dean’s Andromeda about an android’s awakening of human emotions. Closing the night is Josh Gibson’s atmospheric Pig Film about a woman’s work on a hog farm during the impending end of the world.

The festival then opens in Santa Ana, CA from Friday, March 15th through Sunday, March 17th. Essential films include Unzipping, the cinematic directorial debut of actress and writer Lisa Edelstein about the poignant unfastening of a marriage and Star Trek veteran Walter Koenig’s confrontation with fate in Michael Baker’s Who is Martin Danzig? Holding its World Premiere is Tony Dean Smith’s mind-bending thriller Volition about a clairvoyant man’s quest to avoid his own murder and the U.S. and L.A. Premiere of Sarah K. Reimers’ Bitten about a dog’s rabid night of risk and adventure. Dive Odyssey kicks off a lineup of feverish documentaries as Janne Kasperi Suhonen takes viewers on an absorbing aquatic journey and Colin Ramsay and James Uren decipher what makes “good” artificial intelligence in the dawn of ethics and technology in Good in the Machine.

Observing the 90th anniversary of Philip K. Dick’s birth and the 50th anniversary of Blade Runner’s origin novel, the two organizations joined forces for the Philip K. Dick Multicultural Dystopian/Sci Fi Short Film Challenge, a short film competition that invited participants to develop projects that analyze contemporary life in view of themes associated with Philip K. Dick.

The festival’s expansion has also furthered its commitment to feature a more inclusive brand of filmmaking with 31 percent of the official selections directed or co-directed by women and minority filmmakers. Many films are seen from the perspectives of racially and gender diverse characters. “There is a new freshness entering the genre,” said Abella, who curated an equality-driven showcase of films from the emerging talent strengthening the industry. “Science fiction is based on exploring the ‘other’ and no one is more qualified than those groups who have been marginalized to tell their story using the tools of sci-fi.”

The PKD Film Festival schedule follows the jump.

Continue reading

Fifth Annual PKD European SF Film Festival

The 5th Annual Philip K. Dick European Science Fiction Film Festival, which celebrates the talent of independent filmmakers and honors Philip K. Dick’s worldwide legacy, convenes at venues in Germany in late October and France in early November.

The festival will be held October 25-26 at L’Hybride and Inoui in Lille, France and November 1-2 at Film Club 813 e.V. in Cologne, Germany.

“Europe has a long tradition of integral and psychological science fiction,” said Daniel Abella, the founder and director of the festival. “Both Lille and Cologne have a rich cultural life and are popular areas for learning and appreciating this genre.” The event will also commemorate its namesake by attributing his work as a reflection of modern society. “Philip K. Dick foresaw the aspects of technology to free and liberate us,” said Abella. “If you look around at the technological advancements of our world, many of his stories have come to pass and the festival recognizes his vision. He understood that the fluid nature of reality and the lure of transhumanism is becoming a real phenomenon.”

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 25, 2018:

L’Hybride (18 Rue Gosselet 59000, Lille, France)

Short Films + Q&A: Reality Is An Illusion
7:00pm – 9:00pm

It’s A Clear Day

It’s a Clear Day (2017)
Director: María Vázquez
Run Time/Country: 14 min, Spain
Synopsis: A woman is planning on giving a lecture on the famous science fiction writer Philip K. Dick. Everything seems like her everyday routine, except for a little excitement because of the event. But as time passes she will discover nothing is what it seems.

Gab (2018)
Director: Gazanfer Biricik
Run Time/Country: 10 min, France
Synopsis: A journalist who was charged by her diary to write an article about a victim killed in an attack organizes an interview with the sister of the deceased in a pub.

The Photographer (2017)
Director: Bertrand Normand
Run Time/Country: 12 min, France
Synopsis: A woman photographs statues of antique gods in the gardens of the Versailles palace. Through her camera, she perceives the presence of a male statue who has come to life and is lurking around her.

The Pipers (2013)
Director: Ammar Quteineh
Run Time/Country: 15 min, France
Synopsis: An army psychiatrist is puzzled by a case of a French soldier who returns from the war in Afghanistan and claims that he’s a plant. Based on Philip K. Dick’s short story Piper in the Woods.

Tous les jours (2017)
Director: Philippe Orreindy
Run Time/Country: 14 min, France
Synopsis: A company director is under the perverse psychological influence of her superior. But is it real or is it an hallucination caused by her anguish?

The Summoned (2017)
Director: Mathias Couquet
Run Time/Country: 29 min, France
Synopsis: Paris, 1920. Four veterans of the Great War painfully try to recover from this dreadful experience. But for them, the horror is only beginning. For in the midst of their dreams, a dark and sinister entity has arisen.

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors.

Short Films + Q&A: Invisible Realms
9:00pm – 11:00pm

The Bay (2017)
Director: Joris Laquittant
Run Time/Country: 23 min, France
Synopsis: Every year during the summer solstice, the Bay transforms into desert sands and the tides stop. This year, when a hunter is charged with battling the forces of nature, nothing goes as planned.

Mimesis (2017)
Director: Patrick Lee
Run Time/Country: 4 min, USA
Synopsis: Nothing is what it seems in the cycling of the natural world.

Le Flottement (2017)
Director: Philippe Gariepy
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Canada
Synopsis: A woman suffering from dementia disappears from her rest home. During the search, her daughter discovers mysterious clues.

A Forest (2017)
Director: Thomas Geffrier
Run Time/Country: 15 min, France
Synopsis: A young woman meets a couple at a private party and leaving with them, she finds herself trapped in some sort of twilight zone from which she cannot escape.

The Devil’s Remix (2017)
Director: Hugues Sanchez
Run Time/Country: 44 min, France
Synopsis: A surrealist remix of Les Diaboliques (1955) directed by Henri Georges Clouzot.

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors and the first Audience Award.
Inoui (6 rue de l’Egalité, 59155 Fâches-Thumesnil, Lille, France)

Virtual Reality Experience

7:00pm – 11:00pm

Eclipse (2018)
Director: Aymeric Favre
Run Time/Country: 40 min, France
Synopsis: An immersive “hyper-reality” experience and a glimpse into tomorrow’s cinema. Contrary to most VR experiences dedicated to entertainment, this exhibition is a four-player interactive science fiction short film enhanced by physical effects, full body awareness and a total freedom of movements.

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2018:

L’Hybride (18 Rue Gosselet 59000, Lille, France)

Short Films + Q&A: The Eschaton Approaches
7:00pm – 9:00pm

Those Who Can Die (2017)
Director: Charlotte Cayeux
Run Time/Country: 18 min, France
Synopsis: A 15-year-old girl enters a strict boarding school. Around her pupils are playing and attending classes with faded eyes and the violence of the supervisors is visible through their obsequious look. One day she meets a classmate and understands their true destiny.

SOMA (2018)
Director: Christel Morvan
Run Time/Country: 9 min, Belgium
Synopsis: A tribute to Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ showing the challenges and risks of living in a world of artificial pleasure.

Cyborgs. Should We Be Better Than We Are? (2017)
Director: Victoria Sutton
Run Time/Country: 23 min, USA
Synopsis: Restoring human senses and capabilities is almost universally accepted, yet enhancing human capabilities beyond human norms is highly controversial. This short documentary explores this question and what it means to be human.

Fraktaal (2017)
Director: Julius Horsthuis
Run Time/Country: 4 min, Netherlands
Synopsis: A world within worlds.

December 17 (2016)
Director: Yuji Hariu
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Japan
Synopsis: In the near future, a family comes face to face with a dangerous secret about their sons.

Metta Via (2017)
Director: Warren Flanagan
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Canada
Synopsis: Set in the future, a young woman wakes up in a mysterious temple-like room and must figure out her purpose.

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors.

Short Films + Q&A: The Darkness Returns
9:00pm – 11:00pm

Shelter (2017)
Director: Daniel Andrew Wunderer
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Austria
Synopsis: A wanderer in the wasteland seeks shelter in an abandoned trailer, where he discovers he corpse of a boy with strange wounds.

MayDay (2016)
Director: Sébastien Vani?ek
Run Time/Country: 13 min, France
Synopsis: A man subject to violent hallucinations must overcome the imminence of death during his extradition flight towards United States.

I Came from the Future (2018)
Director: Dave Lojek
Run Time/Country: 4 min, Germany
Synopsis: A man writes his suicide note but finds there are more questions than answers.

Rabbid Jacob (2017)
Director: Donovan Alonso-Garcia
Run Time/Country: 22 min, France/Belgium
Synopsis: Two meteorites have hit Brussels. There is little time left for Jacob to restore order and moral in the depths of a city in complete loss.

Leftovers & Leftlovers (2017)
Director: Raitis Abele
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Latvia
Synopsis: After years of madness, a man seeks out his past and confronts his feminine and masculine alter egos.

Sound From the Deep (2017)
Director: Antti Laakso, Joonas Allonen
Run Time/Country: 29 min, Finland
Synopsis: An international research group is searching natural resources from the Arctic Ocean. They pick up a strange underwater sound from far north, and start to follow it to the uncharted waters. Inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors and the second Audience Award.

Inoui (6 rue de l’Egalité, 59155 Fâches-Thumesnil, Lille, France)

Virtual Reality Experience
7:00pm – 11:00pm

Eclipse (2018)
Director: Aymeric Favre
Run Time/Country: 40 min, France
Synopsis: An immersive “hyper-reality” experience and a glimpse into tomorrow’s cinema. Contrary to most VR experiences dedicated to entertainment, this exhibition is a four-player interactive science fiction short film enhanced by physical effects, full body awareness and a total freedom of movements.

THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2018:

Film Club 813 e.V. (Hahnenstraße 6 50667, Cologne, Germany)

Short Films + Q&A: War and Paranoia
7:30pm – 9:30pm

Shelter

Shelter (2017)
Director: Daniel Andrew Wunderer
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Austria
Synopsis: A wanderer in the wasteland seeks shelter in an abandoned trailer, where he discovers he corpse of a boy with strange wounds.

The Super Recogniser (2017)
Director: Jennifer Sheridan
Run Time/Country: 11 min, UK
Synopsis: A normal guy has the very special talent of 90% facial recollection. He never forgets a face and you better hope he doesn’t knows yours. Starring Jacob Anderson (Game of Thrones) and Ritu Arya (Humans).

Sound From the Deep (2017)
Director: Antti Laakso, Joonas Allonen
Run Time/Country: 29 min, Finland
Synopsis: An international research group is searching natural resources from the Arctic Ocean. They pick up a strange underwater sound from far north, and start to follow it to the uncharted waters. Inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

Hunters and Gatherers (2018)
Director: Andreas Ramm
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Germany
Synopsis: The year is 2044. A violent conflict permeates throughout the country. Various zones are ridden by chaos and terror. To put down riots, a regime sends troops but does not shy away from biological warfare.

Nazi VR (2017)
Director: David Freid
Run Time/Country: 17 min, Germany
Synopsis: The High Tech Prosecution of a WWII Nazi Guard with virtual reality.

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors.

Short Films + Q&A: Reality Is An Illusion
9:30pm – 11:00pm

It’s a Clear Day (2017)
Director: María Vázquez
Run Time/Country: 14 min, Spain
Synopsis: A woman is planning on giving a lecture on the famous science fiction writer Philip K. Dick. Everything seems like her everyday routine, except for a little excitement because of the event. But as time passes she will discover nothing is what it seems.

The Pipers (2013)
Director: Ammar Quteineh
Run Time/Country: 15 min, France
Synopsis: An army psychiatrist is puzzled by a case of a French soldier who returns from the war in Afghanistan and claims that he’s a plant. Based on Philip K. Dick’s short story Piper in the Woods.

Instant Realities (2017)
Director: Andreas Z. Simon
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Germany
Synopsis: A businessman feels followed by fitting puzzle pieces on the street. Reality seems to fade away and a greater mystery begins.

Gallery of Lost Trades (2018)
Director: Will Kubica
Run Time/Country: 8 min, Germany
Synopsis: The year is 2068. A gallery owner leads a journalist through “The Gallery of Lost Trades”. By means of impressive paintings it depicts the historical downfall of whole fields of trades and professions.

Alchemy (2017)
Director: Brandon Polanco
Run Time/Country: 14 min, USA
Synopsis: A failed everyman begins working through pages and pages of questions. As time begins to elongate, the man finds himself tormented and more and more isolated. He battles the unknown ultimately transcending into a heightened reality, discovering a new life existing between multiple worlds, both familiar and otherworldly.

Mental Health (2018)
Director: Michael Carolan
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Ireland
Synopsis: A young worker is sent to be mentally assessed after expressing disillusionment with his job, leading to a sinister revelation about his very existence.

First Day Kosmos (2018)
Director: Thomas Kuhling
Run Time/Country: 18 min, Germany
Synopsis: Under the vast expanse of a cosmic sky, a psychiatric guardian is on his way to his farmhouse in a secluded region where he is surprised by the unannounced visit of his old friend who escaped from a psychiatric ward.

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 2018:

Film Club 813 e.V. (Hahnenstraße 6 50667, Cologne, Germany)

Short Films + Q&A: Human All To Human
7:30pm – 9:30pm

December 17 (2016)
Director: Yuji Hariu
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Japan
Synopsis: In the near future, a family comes face to face with a dangerous secret about their sons.

SOMA (2018)
Director: Christel Morvan
Run Time/Country: 9 min, Belgium
Synopsis: A tribute to Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’ showing the challenges and risks of living in a world of artificial pleasure.

Cyborgs. Should We Be Better Than We Are? (2017)
Director: Victoria Sutton
Run Time/Country: 23 min, USA
Synopsis: Restoring human senses and capabilities is almost universally accepted, yet enhancing human capabilities beyond human norms is highly controversial. This short documentary explores this question and what it means to be human.

The Very Near Future (2017)
Director: Sebastian Egert
Run Time/Country: 5 min, Germany
Synopsis: In the very near future, a man tries to order a pizza online.

The Ash: Safe Haven (2017)
Director: Marty Stalker
Run Time/Country: 17 min, UK
Synopsis: A deadly volcanic ash cloud. A 12-year-old boy besieged by the bloodthirsty infected. When the ash falls, terror rises.

Brainbloodvolume (2016)
Director: John Carter
Run Time/Country: 17 min, Germany
Synopsis: Inspired by the bizarre actual life events of Dutch librarian and medical student Hugo Bart Huges, this stylistic interpretation of the essential moments at which Huges followed through with an operation he theorized would lead to a permanent state of higher consciousness – through the ancient mind-altering practice of “trepanation.”

Post-Film Q&A:
The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with directors.

Short Films + Q&A: The Alchemical Wedding
9:30pm – 11:30pm

APEX (2018)
Director: Stuart T. Birchall
Run Time/Country: 4 min, UK
Synopsis: Emergence of a hybrid human-alien consciousness from the void.

Metta Via (2017)
Director: Warren Flanagan
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Canada
Synopsis: Set in the future, a young woman wakes up in a mysterious temple-like room and must figure out her purpose.

Genesis (2018)
Director: Michael Tekle
Run Time/Country: 9 min, Germany
Synopsis: The CEO of a biotech corporation suffers from an incurable disease. With the help of a doctor, he creates an android with autonomously growing A.I. uploads of his entire memory. However, his search for eternal life might end faster than he thinks.

The Replacement (2018)
Director: Sean Miller
Run Time/Country: 16 min, USA
Synopsis: On election night, a janitor feels cheated out of a life he might have lived when his own clone becomes the president. He goes on a bender to seek justice, encountering new forms of prejudice, dismissal, and classicism. In a society where the morality around cloning is dividing the masses, physically looking like the newly elected president has its own dangers.

Ghostcode (2017)
Director: Patrick Defasten
Run Time/Country: 9 min, Germany
Synopsis: Advancements in sonic warfare lead to a net-born artificial intelligence.

Voyager (2017)
Director: Kjersti Helen Rasmussen
Run Time/Country: 8 min, Norway
Synopsis: A shooting star falls down over the arctic island of Svalbard. The Global Seed Vault gets an unexpected visit. Hunger knows no boundaries.

Pura Energia (2018)
Director: Francisco Garcia Mateos
Run Time/Country: 15 min, Spain
Synopsis: They thought it was a distant future. They thought they knew disaster. But only a few of us were aware of what surely would happen.

Pure White (2018)
Director: Sven Windszus
Run Time/Country: 3 min, Germany
Synopsis: The protagonist is an anatomy model who awakens in a seemingly perfect world. The fact that she must live as a “damaged” being in such an ideal environment amplifies her pain. She converses with her creator in an attempt to find answers.

I Came from the Future (2018)
Director: Dave Lojek
Run Time/Country: 4 min, Germany
Synopsis: A man writes his suicide note but finds there are more questions than answers.

Back and Forward INC. (2014)
Director: Martin Demmer
Run Time/Country: 13 min, Germany
Synopsis: Switching between visual metaphors and a near future possible way of living created by the company Back and Forward INC., a program is launched for the modern society that nobody has to fear the effect of the burnout syndrome any longer.

Attack Of The Cyber Octopuses (2017)
Director: Nicola Piovesan
Run Time/Country: 20 min, Estonia/Italy
Synopsis: Neo-Berlin, 2079. A dark city held by mega corporations where the only way to enjoy life is by connecting into cyberspace. Here, a team of detectives are investigating a new menace: an army of cyber octopuses that are terrorizing the government.

2018 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival Award Winners

The 2018 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival has announced its award winners. The sixth annual event took place from February 23-25 and featured exclusive premieres, panel discussions and virtual reality experiences, as well as appearances by Armand Assante, Charles Baker, Jonny Beauchamp, Nicki Clyne, Nana Gouvea, Tom Sizemore and Melvin Van Peebles at the screenings of their film premieres.

The festival awarded films with honors based on originality, creative insight and inspirational storytelling through the prophetic lens of the festival’s namesake. “With each passing year, more people are learning through our festival of the universal appeal of Philip K. Dick,” said Abella. “Our 2018 winning films capture his legacy and serve as a beacon of hope and possibility for independent filmmakers who are not afraid of being different and rocking the boat.”

2018 Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival Award Winners

Alterscape cinematographer Richard Clabaugh, Sounds of Freedom director Holly Chadwick, Black Wake director Jeremiah Kipp, Black Wake producer Carlos Keyes, The Shaman and the Scientist director Sarah Hutt, The Wanderers actor Armand Assante

BEST PHILIP K. DICK FEATURE

Alterscape (2018) — World Premiere
Director: Serge Levin
Run Time/Country: 88 min, USA

Synopsis: After a failed suicide attempt, a young man coping with loss and depression submits to a series of trials that fine-tune human emotions but his unique reaction to the tests send him on a journey that transcends both physical and perceived reality. Starring Michael Ironside (Total Recall) Charles Baker (Breaking Bad), Alex Veadov (Act of Valor), Serge Levin (Welcome to Willits), Debbie Rochon (Model Hunger), Mack Kuhr (Law & Order: Special Victims Unit), Olan Montgomery (The Blacklist) and Sara K. Edwards (Mad Women). Produced by Jon Keeyes (American Nightmare) and cinematography by Richard Clabaugh (Eyeborgs).

Alterscape actors Mack Kuhr, Charles Baker

BEST SCIENCE FICTION FEATURE

The Child Remains (2017) — NYC Premiere
Director: Michael Melski
Run Time/Country: 120 min, Canada

Synopsis: An expectant couple’s intimate weekend turns to terror as they discover their secluded country inn is a haunted maternity home where infants and mothers were murdered. Starring Suzanne Clément (Mommy), Allan Hawco (Frontier), Shelley Thompson (Labyrinth) and Géza Kovács (Scanners).

BEST HORROR FEATURE

Black Wake (2018) — World Premiere
Director: Jeremiah Kipp
Run Time/Country: 120 min, USA

Synopsis: Specialists gather in a top-secret facility to investigate a series of strange deaths on beaches along the Atlantic Ocean and examine video evidence to uncover a possible parasitic explanation for the fatalities. When a determined detective sends one of the scientists the crazed writings of a mysterious homeless man, she slowly learns that the actual threat may be more dangerous – and far older – than anyone ever imagined. Starring Nana Gouvea (The Fever), Golden Globe Award nominee Tom Sizemore (Witness Protection), Academy Award nominee Eric Roberts (Runaway Train), Screen Actors Guild Award winner Vincent Pastore (The Sopranos), Jonny Beauchamp (Penny Dreadful)  and Chuck Zito (Oz). Inspired by the cosmic horror of genre writer H.P. Lovecraft.

Black Wake producer Carlos Keyes, actress Kelly Rae LeGault, festival director Daniel Abella, actress Nana Gouvea, actor Jonny Beauchamp, actor Tom Sizemore.”

BEST DRAMATIC FEATURE

The Wanderers: The Quest of The Demon Hunter (2017) — USA Premiere
Director: Dragos Buliga
Run Time/Country: 90 min, Romania

Synopsis: A vampire hunter and a reporter investigate mysterious circumstances at a castle in Transylvania. Starring Primetime Emmy Award winner Armand Assante (Gotti).

The Wanderers composer Jeremy Adelman, screenwriter Octav Gheorghe, actor Armand Assante, producer Andrei Boncea, director Dragos Buliga

BEST DOCUMENTARY

The Shaman and The Scientist (2017)
Director: Sarah Hutt
Run Time/Country: 15 min, USA

Synopsis: This short documentary explores the topic of traditional plant medicine from two perspectives – that of Don Juan Tangoa Paima, a curandero who works with Ayahuasca medicine in the Peruvian Amazon, and through the research of Dr. Dennis McKenna, who taught ethnopharmacology for over 30 years and is the brother of ethnobotanist Terence McKenna, looking for new medicines to treat schizophrenia and dementia. The story takes viewers from jungle to lab asking what is the value of undiscovered knowledge in the world’s most biodiverse biomes, and what is at stake if we allow those precious resources to be lost.

The Shaman and the Scientist film subject Dr. Dennis McKenna, director Sarah Hutt

BEST SINGULARITY, ESCHATON AND BEYOND FILM

It Began Without Warning (2017)
Director: Santiago C. Tapia, Jessica Curtright
Run Time/Country: 5 min, USA

Synopsis: “The time has come,” the Walrus said. And all the little Oysters stood and waited in a row. Produced by Couper Samuelson, the executive producer of the Golden Globe Award nominated film Get Out (2017) and Efren Ramirez (actor, Napoleon Dynamite).

BEST LATINO, AFRICAN AMERICAN AND PEOPLE OF COLOR SCIENCE FICTION FILM

Program (2017)
Director: Gabriel de Urioste
Run Time/Country: 8 min, USA

Synopsis: A young woman goes back to fix a broken relationship with a lost love.

BEST PHILIP K. DICK AUDIENCE AWARD

Paleonaut (2017)
Director: Eric McEver
Run Time/Country: 16 min, Japan/China

Synopsis: A scientist studying the first human time traveller falls in love with her subject. But if her research succeeds they will become separated by eons of history. She must find a way to connect with him across the ages or lose him forever.

Paleonaut director Eric McEver

BEST SCIENCE FICTION BACKERS AWARD

Metta Via (2017)
Director: Warren Flanagan
Run Time/Country: 10 min, Canada

Synopsis: Set in the future, a young woman wakes up in a mysterious temple-like room and must figure out her purpose.

BEST SCIENCE FICTION SHORT

Paleonaut (2017)
Director: Eric McEver
Run Time/Country: 16 min, Japan/China

Synopsis: A scientist studying the first human time traveller falls in love with her subject. But if her research succeeds they will become separated by eons of history. She must find a way to connect with him across the ages or lose him forever.

BEST HORROR SHORT

Sound From the Deep (2017)
Director: Antti Laakso, Joonas Allonen
Run Time/Country: 29 min, Finland

Synopsis: An international research group is searching natural resources from the Arctic Ocean. They pick up a strange underwater sound from far north, and start to follow it to the uncharted waters. Inspired by the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

BEST ANIMATED FILM

Astronaut of Featherweight (2017)
Director: Dalibor Baric
Run Time/Country: 27 min, Croatia

Synopsis: From space spa colonies to alien plantations, everybody is forced to take care of their bodies in this dark vision of a hyper-capitalist trans-human society in which body is a commodity and money is immortality.

BEST WEB SERIES

Sounds of Freedom (2017)
Director: Holly Chadwick
Run Time/Country: 5 min, USA

Synopsis: Two veterans, one of the Iraq War and one of the Vietnam War, both suffer from post traumatic stress disorder. From their jobs at the local newspaper and through a series of flashbacks and sessions with a common therapist, they are challenged to the max when a serial killer strikes at home.

BEST VIRTUAL REALITY

The Making of Marine Butterfly (2017)
Director: Alex Bartuli
Run Time/Country: 23 min, USA/Canada

Synopsis: Exploring the invention of the 3-Dimensional Audio System and where will it take mankind.

BEST TRAILER

Impuratus (2017)
Director: Michael Yurinko
Run Time/Country: 5 min, USA

Synopsis: A police detective in circa 1917 is called to a remote mental hospital to witness the death-bed confession of a mysterious Civil War Vet that forces him to believe in the supernatural. Starring Holt Boggs (The Leftovers), John Savage (The Deer Hunter) and Saturn Award nominee Dee Wallace (E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial).

About The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival:

The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival launched in 2012 as New York City’s first festival of its kind and honors the enduring legacy of novelist Philip K. Dick, whose work maintains a strong influence over modern culture and society. Organized by individuals and filmmakers who understand the difficulties and challenges of presenting a unique narrative in a corporate environment, the festival embraces original concepts and alternative approaches to storytelling in the form of independent science fiction, horror, supernatural, fantasy, metaphysical and virtual reality films. Since 2013, the festival has held international gatherings in France, Poland and Germany and many domestic screening events throughout the year. The 2018 festival was held at Village East Cinema (181-189 2nd Avenue, New York, NY 10003) with two screenings at Museum of the Moving Image (36-01 35th Avenue, Astoria, NY 11106).