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Similo

A sci-fi romance set in a dystopian future questions about artificial love and the future of humanity. (NSFW)

2014 | Dystopia | Romance | Sci-Fi | Spain | VFX | 2014

2065. The entire planet is facing the climate change aftermath. One of the few habitable places left is Antarctica, where the ice melted, allowing large corporations to build self-sufficient city-enclaves to allow humanity to live a “purified” existence, away from dangers and diseases. The theme of this story, however, does not have much to do with the big political issues evoked by the post-apocalyptic setting of the film (deliberately left in the background), mainly focusing on the two protagonists Hebe and Ciro, whose relationship is halted by a dramatic and unexpected event.

Ciro has suffered a serious accident and he is trying to recover. He lost his memory and, while he recognizes a connection with Hebe, he cannot remember the time spent together and his feelings for her. Hebe tries to stay close to him, but all her attempts to awaken his memories are ineffective. Without revealing too much about the circumstances of the incident and Ciro’s identity – a flashback will eventually explain these points – we can say this story puts both characters in front of  some key issues about their lives regarding love, isolation, oblivion, the double, and the limitations of living in a “perfect world”.

In particular, Hebe’s affliction for a lost feeling, but also her contradictory attitude towards love and its limits, are the perfect counterpoint to launch the real question of this short: in a world in which relationships are encoded, calculated to perfection and reduced to functions that can be artificially reproduced, is it still possible to live a feeling in a natural, unconditional and fallible way? A feeling capable to base its greatness within human and temporal limits?

An ambitious shortfilm from all points of view, with an attention to details utterly rare for an independent project like this, which in part explains the troubled production process lasted nearly 10 years. Similo marks the first collaboration between Bruno Miguel Zacarias and “MacGregor” de Olasoa, whose talent as a cinematographer we’ve had the pleasure to admire in Blinky™.  They both work for the label Black Milk, and have made ​​several short films and commercials collecting about thirty awards in festivals from all around the world. The development of Similo started back in 2005, but was put on hold almost immediately due to budget constraints. But the duo did not give up, and two years later launched a teaser to attract funders. The teaser was the “internet-buzz” of 2007, and has convinced Bruno Zacarias to self finance the project.

In addition, to complete the project and achieve the impressive VFX – one of the strong features of the movie – the team has launched a post-production Kickstarter campaign in 2010 and has managed to collect the last $14 .000 needed to complete the film. A story of perseverance and passion, that were amply rewarded, as the duo is now represented by United Talent Agency and Mosaic and is currently involved in the development of Low Zero: a futuristic action-movie pre-emptively acquired by Warner Bros. Even though this is not the case for all developing projects, this “happy-end” makes for an hopeful precedent.

Other details worth knowing: the sidereal and melancholic music is by Max Richter, Hammock, and Helios, while the external locations were shot in Lanzarote, in the beautiful Timanfaya National Park (already the set of 2001: A space odyssey.). It is also interesting to note that the film is a little summary of the transition from film to digital, having been filmed in several formats: 35mm, RED, a bit of Phantom and even MiniDV inserts.

Tommaso Fagioli

Tommaso Fagioli

Tommaso Fagioli

Founder, creative director, curator @ Good Short Films. Fond of great stories, great thinkers, great booze. My motto is, your motto.

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