Filmmakers, especially those who tell stories of possible futures, are much like fortune tellers. Among the questions they attempt to answer are, “Where is humankind headed?” “How will we get there?” “What is a science-fiction filmmaker’s responsibility to realism and truth?” And, “How much science does a film need to have to be considered science-fiction?” In this one-time-only Science on Screen event, graphic artist and award-winning short filmmaker John Harden presents three very different shorts from across his career, some humorous, some heartbreaking, each using science to explore the possibilities and problems that may await our species in the near-to-distant future.
Called “delightful,” and “endlessly inventive” by Alexander Payne (director of “Sideways” and “Nebraska”), “La Vie D’un Chien” (“The Life of a Dog”) explores how one scientist’s quest for transformation becomes a humanity-reckoning social movement. Winner of numerous prizes, including Sci-Fi London Film Festival’s Best Short Film Award, 2005. The hilariously off-kilter Cold War-themed “The Story of Sputnik” takes a retro-futurist look at an unthinkable possibility, and the movingly bittersweet “New” explores the human cost of eternal life, as an elderly married couple awake in a world where the cryogenically preserved are granted a second chance at life, in brand new bodies.