Director Neill Blomkamp has released the first short film from his online experiment Oats Studios, and Rakka is a dense, brutal look at what might happen in the event of an alien invasion. The reptilian invaders are experimenting on humans, controlling our minds and changing the atmosphere to methane.
So yeah. It didn’t go well for us.
The 21-minute short is a series of vignettes about the resistance, the fate of millions of people at the hands of the aliens and what a small, successful counter-operation may look like. It’s not a hopeful film, but the tone and pacing allow it to stand apart from the science fiction the finds its way into the large budget tentpole films that are dominating the box office.
And Blomkamp has a much larger story in his head, completely with a rather unique look at an invasion force made up of a fluid-like sentient nanotechnology.
“The aliens would have essentially come to earth in a lake,” Blomkamp told The Verge. “It forms whenever they need, and when they arrive at Earth, it probably split up into several pieces, with the different ships that formed out of it going to different continents and building the towers that they live in. They breathe a different atmosphere. If you look at the creature itself, it has this black hood on that also runs down the bridge of its nose. It’s almost like a gas mask, but hooked directly into their nostrils. It just does whatever they need it to: it processes Earth’s air into a mixture that they can breathe, it forms weapons, it forms the structures that they live in, it forms their vehicles.”
There will be more stories in this world if people decide to pay for it, which is the entire business model behind Oats Studios. It’s a lofty goal, but the first release is very much worth your time.