By David Dent
Ray (Dean Imperial) is a lost luggage delivery driver whose world is changing around him fast, largely thanks to the revolutionary Quantum operating system, which has become dominant in the marketplace to improve worldwide commerce. Looking to earn some money to pay the hospital bills for his younger half-brother Jamie (Babe Howard), who has an CFS type illness called Omnia, he’s introduced to the world of Quantum cabling, a supposedly get rich quick profession.
The role of the cablers is to venture out into the parks and connect cables to Quantum hubs, the aim being to exponentially extend the reach of the system by joining cables and earn big money by undertaking more risky routes. It’s tiring stuff, and the seriously out of condition Ray struggles both with the technology and the rigorous regime of the cablers.
But he quickly realises that his given tracker name – Lapsis Beeftech – belongs to the profile of one of the upper echelons of the cablers; he has literally been given someone else’s identity, but sensing the ability to make serious money to help Jamie, he says nothing. Friending another cabler, Anna (Madeline Wise), she fills him in on the politics of the cabling community, about the mechanical cablers who try to outpace the humans to improve productivity, and also of the growing army of revolutionaries within the cablers who wish for their rights to be recognised within the corporate management structure of Quantum bosses.
‘Lapsis’ weaves the conspiratorial spiral of a Philip K. Dick story with a touch of the warped sci fi and off humour of the movies of Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead. It’s quirky, inconclusive and definitely not for people who like tidy beginning, middle and end movies. It has some things to say about the future of technology, cod medicine, and what it means to be human. But it’s in absolutely no rush to say them, and its meandering style won’t be for everyone. I liked it a lot.