The first Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival was attended by over a thousand people this month at various screenings (10 features, 50 shorts) and panels. The creative vision of Philip K. Dick lives on as the borough becomes the setting of a myriad of films inspired by one of the genre’s most celebrated contributors at The Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival from December 7-9. Named for the iconic novelist and short story writer whose work inspired the films Blade Runner, Total Recall and Minority Report, the three-day Philip K. Dick Science Fiction Film Festival started a tradition of honoring films inspired by authors who have explored the metaphysical and eerie in all its manifestations.
Here are the winners:
Best Science Fiction Feature – Radio Free Albemuth
Description: In an alternate reality America circa 1985 under the authoritarian control of Nixonesque President Fremont (Scott Wilson), Berkeley record store clerk Nick Brady (Scarfe) begins to experience strange visions from an entity he calls VALIS that cause him to uproot his family and move to Los Angeles where he becomes a successful music company executive. With the help of best friend, science-fiction writer Philip K. Dick himself (Whigam) and a mysterious woman named Silvia (Morissette), Nick finds himself drawn into a dangerous political-mystical conspiracy of cosmic proportions.
Best Science Fiction Feature in Dramatic Competition – The Last Push
Description: When a tragic accident cuts short the first manned mission to explore life on the moons of Jupiter, Michael Forrest must make the 3 year journey home to Earth in pure solitude. This film explores what it means to be human, and how are lives are nested within the lives of others.
Best Science Fiction Short – Henri
Description: Set hundreds of years in the future, a derelict spacecraft, controlled and powered by a human brain, floats aimlessly in the outer reaches of space. Trapped in the cold, mechanical prison of the vessel, the brain, which has no recollection or concept of self, miraculously begins to experience disjointed images of its former life – images it cannot understand. Piece by piece, it builds a body eventually becoming a cyborg with awareness. A running voice over brings us into the mind of Henri as he remembers his last interaction with his builder (Margot Kidder, Superman), Henri becomes human (Keir Dullea) in his final confrontation with mortality.
Best Documentary – The Hidden Hand
Description: The Hidden Hand is an EBE Award winning documentary by filmmaker, James Carman. The concept of an alien presence is a part of our contemporary culture and many people believe extraterrestrials actually exist. Could there be something to this modern myth? Could an extraterrestrial species really have a hidden hand in shaping the events of our civilization? The Hidden Hand explores a new paradigm of consciousness taking root within humanity.
Best 2012 Singularity and Beyond – Singularity
Description: Singularity is a time when human technology moves beyond our ability to understand it; a time in which humans will find their future impossible to predict. Singularity contemplates the days leading up to this event and revolves around the memories of the A.I.’s creator who uses his memories as a way to teach and bring the computer program to self awareness.
Best Horror Supernatural Feature – Blood for Irina
Description: Blood for Irina, from Fangoria editor Chris Alexander, follows the titular character: a predator who stalks streets at night looking for blood, she has lived over a century; tormented by memory, living in a run-down motel by the sea, Irina has reached the end. Her perceptions skewed, her body and mind revolting against themselves, she waits for an exit. Her private hell is echoed by the motel manager driven by an obsession to protect Irina and keep her secrets safe, and a broken prostitute whose desperate plight may be worse than Irina’s.
Best Trailer – 36 Saints
Best Film From a Creator of Color – White
Description: It’s another sweltering 120-degree winter day with five more days to Christmas and hot is the only season left in New York City. Global warming has become a tangible threat to survival and everyone is creating new ways to protect themselves from the sun. Bato, an expecting father enters into a race against the sun, the birth, and his own identity to save his family as he is forced to sell the new currency of this world.
Best Web Series – The Sin City
The festival was also honored to host panels with several distinguished guests who have led affluent careers in the field of science, science fiction and in the approach and investigations of the phenomenons that have bestowed countless thoughts and ideas among scholars, theorists and believers for centuries.