Future Cinema

Course Site for Future Cinema 1 (and sometimes Future Cinema 2: Applied Theory) at York University, Canada

The Cinema of “Utopia”

What would a perfect world look like for you?

What if you could be invincible, immortal, all knowing? What if everyone else was as well? Would you want to be special?

What about your own universe, where you could live your wildest dreams?

All of this would be possible in the future. And possibly before you’d expect it. Imagine a computer capable of entering you into a simulated universe, where you can set the rules. And not only one universe, but infinite. You could swing swords with Aragorn, cast spells with Harry, play hockey with Gretzky. And you could do this with others too, as these computers could be connected. You and as many friends as you want could enter a world where you rule as lords, form alliances and wage war with each other. Although you could just as easily go on a ski trip to Mars.

Or why not live someone else’s life, going along for the ride. With infinite time (immortality), why not create an entire authentic life experience, and share it with others? All narrative art forms are summaries, life is story.

Why stop at being a human? Why not be a goat in the himalayas, or an octopus in the deep sea? Hell, go be Pacman and experience being half mouth, or fly through space at impossible speeds (think of the “Ship of Imagination” from Cosmos)

What if this computer was in our heads, and could be activated merely by desire? What if we could shape these worlds with our thoughts, with the most intuitive interface possible (imagination). We could share these worlds, almost like sharing dreams, a la Inception, minus the intravenous.

We wouldn’t even need to enter into a simulation to use this technology. Read a book or parchment that doesn’t exist in reality, but can be conjured for yourself and/or others to see. Wear custom clothes that others see (sorry non-cyborgs and animals, hope you’re body positive).  If we no longer need to eat, why not enjoy a vast banquet, with ethically produced (or not produced, more accurately), delicious food and drink, all under a real sun, with real people?

The imagination lies at the core of every creative endeavor, and its full realization, incorporating all the senses, is its end goal. Just as moving images and audio recordings merged to produce modern film, the confluence of all the senses results in a fully realized cinema.

The ability of customization and creation invites you to blur the line between performer and audience, between creator and spectator. The only limits are human imagination.

Wed, September 23 2015 » assignments, augmented reality, future cinema 2015, games, screen assignment, screen technologies, virtual reality