Les Utopiales, held every year in Nantes, France, is among Europe’s biggest fandom events, an international festival of science fiction and fantasy literature, film, fine arts, comics, games, and animation. Curated for you by the festival’s film programmer, Frédéric Temps, this program gathers the festival’s favourite short films of recent vintage — a panoply of head-scratchers, heartbreakers, and mindblowers.
A pilot crash-lands on an alien planet, where she faces an unexpected enemy — another version of herself, in Matt Turner’s RFLKTR (USA, 2018). At the height of Kennedy’s Cold War, a married couple, exemplars of the American Dream, encounter a stranger who will change history, or how it was explained to us, in Eduardo Casanova’ LO SIENTO MI AMOR (Spain, 2018). In Peter Cilella’s OCCUPANT (USA, 2018), first you hear it, then you see it, then it's too late. It's Election Night 2032 in Sean Miller’s THE REPLACEMENT (USA, 2018), and Abe, a lonely janitor, watches his clone become the first clone President. Something unusual falls from the sky, right onto a potato field, in Roberts Kulenko’s LAURA & VINETA (Latvia, 2017). Will a government agent Einars be smart enough to block farmer Aldis from getting back to his legendary potatoes? A sarcastic physicist at a nuclear testing facility finds himself in a sticky situation, in THE MELTDOWN by Connor Kerrigan (USA, 2016). In a near future of Marc-Henri Boulier’s JULIET (France, 2015), the SEED company launches, with great fanfare, the first generation of synthetic pleasure beings. An abandoned robot awakens alone in a junkyard, in Will Welles’ RUST IN PEACE (USA, 2018), and sets out to return to his creator's ranch, to learn if the love he feels is returned.