Rakka, A Visionary Sci-Fi Short From Neill Blomkamp’s Oats Studios
About a month ago, District 9 and Chappie director Neill Blomkamp unveiled Oats Studios, his new project focusing on experimental short films. He described the studio as an attempt to remain creative in a film industry that rewards endless sequels and franchises. Through Oats, he’ll be developing a range of potential projects, from serious science fiction to more off-beat concepts, with the hope that some of them may get picked up as feature films.
Rakka envisions an Earth (only three years in the future) now under the control of strange reptilian overlords. Describing mankind’s existing as now akin to “pests” or “vermin”, these alien invaders came to this world to exterminate humans and harvest our lands to grow their own crops. Rakka is the story of a small group of soldiers who band together in one last attempt to fight off this merciless species.
Between this and his early, pre-District 9 work, I wonder if short films are where Blomkamp’s real talents may lie. There’s not much time to introduce characters or tell a complete story, so he’s forced to let style lead the way. The results are certainly interesting. There are more life and creativity here than there was in Elysium, that’s for sure.