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Sci-Fi London Film Festival announces programme

Today the SCI-FI-LONDON FILM FESTIVAL 2022 launches its cosmic 22nd annual programme, which will run from 19th May until 22nd May 2022 with four days of fabulous films. It will showcase a fantastic line-up with 3 World Premieres, 3 UK Premieres, 14 World Short Film Premieres and 13 UK Short Film Premieres. Alongside, the festival is also doing a cocktail-fuelled classic screening of SOYLENT GREEN, which is set in 2022!

Opening this year’s festival on 19th May is the disturbing, and set to be a cult classic, THE INNOCENTS by Eskil Vogt.

From the director of BLIND and THE WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD, this is an outstanding piece of cinema, but not for the faint-hearted.

During a bright Nordic summer, a group of children reveal their dark and mysterious powers when the adults aren’t looking. In this original and gripping thriller, playtime takes a dangerous turn.

Unlike in Wyndham’s The Midwich Cuckoos, these kids are not ganging up on their adult carers. At times reminiscent of the more teenage CHRONICLE, the simplicity of the sparingly deployed effects adds realism that will haunt your imagination long after watching.

The festival’s Closing Night on 22nd May at Stratford Picturehouse is the World Premiere Of DEUS, directed by Steve Stone.

Earth is on the brink of an environmental disaster. The population has risen to more than 20 billion and huge areas of the planet are uninhabitable. Against this backdrop, a massive black sphere is discovered in the orbit of Mars. The Sphere begins to transmit a single word in each of Earth‘s languages: Deus (God).

Commercial spaceship, The Achilles is sent to investigate but, on approaching the red planet, it becomes damaged by a strange beam of light emanating from the sphere. Will the crew survive and discover the origin of the sphere and its purpose?

Claudia Black (FARSCAPE, STARGATE SG-1), David O’Hara (BRAVEHEART), Phil Davis (ALIEN 3) & Richard Blackwood (HOLLYOAKS) lead a stellar cast in this intriguing and grand looking space drama.

Another major Gala this year is the World Premiere of DOCTOR WHO AM I.

Documentary filmmaker, Vanessa Yuille (in her debut feature) follows friend and co-director, Matthew Jacobs (British writer of the 1996 TV movie Doctor Who) as he is reluctantly pulled back into the fandom that rejected his work 25 years earlier.

The journey not only becomes hilarious and emotionally perilous for the duo but also reveals a touching and quirky face-off between the American Doctor Who fans and Matthew himself.

As they explore the fandom, Matthew unexpectedly finds himself a kindred part of this close-knit, yet vast, family of fans. The documentary deals with the desire to belong to a community, and how people can become nourished and enriched by the experience.

SFL are excited to have the directors for the world premiere of this fun, informative and very touching film.

SCI-FI-LONDON are also screening the World Premiere of a new dystopian science fiction thriller, THE DEAL, directed by Orsi Nagypal.

After a pandemic has left the planet devastated with insufficient resources to maintain the human population, the totalitarian governing body, The Bureau, has set up ‘The Deal’. The terms are simple: accept The Deal, and you’ll have work, a home and medical care for the next twenty years. At the end of the time period, you must sacrifice your life for the greater good.

TALA took The Deal when she was pregnant. and has spent the ensuing nineteen years selflessly raising her daughter, ANALYN so that she would never have to take The Deal herself. Just five days before Tala is scheduled to die, Analyn becomes very ill. A life-saving procedure with Tala as donor is beyond their financial means and so begins their adventure to find a way to avoid The Bureau and keep them both alive.

Drawing on themes in Logan’s Run and Soylent Green, this is a slick, fast-paced thriller. Former SCI-FI-LONDON 48hr film challenge winner, Emma Fischer, stars in the movie alongside Lisa Brenner, Alastair Mackenzie and Sumalee Montano.

RANI RANI RANI
Dir: Rajaram Rajendran (2022, India, English/Hindi (English subtitles) 98minutes) UK PREMIERE

Rani, played by Tannistha Chatterjee (BRICK LANE), lives in an almost-abandoned Indian village. For Rani, it’s another ordinary day populated by her feckless husband, his brother and ruthless sister-in-law, all fighting about money.

While Rani is seeking out some peace and quiet, she happens upon some guys demonstrating an experimental device to a potential buyer. They ask Rani if she will be their guinea pig, and she’s lured into their machine. She emerges seemingly unscathed, but something has changed, the device has created another version of Rani… and that’s just the start of her problems.

Rajendran’s début is a refreshing South Asian indie that sidesteps mystical and spiritual influences and revels in a sci-fi world.

ANNULAR ECLIPSE
Chi Zhang, 2021 China, Chinese (English subtitles), 98minutes, UK PREMIERE

In a dystopian future, a cure for Alzheimer’s has given rise to technology that enables near-perfect brainwashing and memory editing.

Two contract killers, Ge and Song, carry out daily executions for the organisation. Ge has become a deeply troubled man, sustaining nightmares and flashes of suppressed memory. On their next assignment, Ge’s flashbacks aren’t ones he recognises; it seems that someone is manipulating his memory and their latest target is someone important from his past. The assassins must infiltrate the Brain Science Corporation to find out the truth.

Picture a Hong-Kong style mash-up of Blade Runner and Memento – Zhang’s film is a futuristic, dystopian love letter to cyberpunk. A big step forward for Chinese sci-fi cinema.

For the full line up visit the website: sci-fi-london.com #SFL2022

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