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The 8 Coolest Short Sci-Fi Films Online

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Haven't seen Ex Machina yet? How about Her?

Or Under the Skin? Surely Interstellar?!

Slowly but surely, Hollywood has come back around to the notion that sci-fi doesn't have to be about lasers and aliens (fun though they are), producing a string of mature, insightful stories that explore humanity's increasingly complicated relationship with technology.

As ever, the big studios are late to the party; short film makers have been plumbing the debts of the genre for years, creating thought-provoking animations and low-budget dramas that sit shoulder-to-shoulder with Charlie Brooker's acclaimed Black Mirror.

We've picked out some of the finest from the internet's cavernous stores to expand your mind. Turn your smartphone off, cover your webcam and prepare to seriously consider that life in the wilderness you once Googled. On second thoughts, best avoid Google from now on. They know too much.


Dr. Easy

Based on the novel The Red Men by Matthew De Abaitua. What if the only person on your side wasn't really a person at all? 


Alive in Joburg

The documentary-style short that introduced the world to the sci-fi-filled mind of Neill Blomkamp. The themes and characters of this six-minute masterpiece would eventually grow to become District 9.


From the Future with Love

A world in which police protection plans are bought on an insurance scheme basis. Brutal and brilliant. 


Tears of Steel

While "scientists vs robots" might not sound all that interesting, Tears of Steel is a project worthy of reading up. Made with a free, open source 3D graphics software package, the short "open movie" was released with a Creative Commons 3.0 Attribution license - meaning anyone could go in and tweak it. 


Memory 2.0

A curious, twisted tale that sees technology help users relive past memories. Her meets Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.


Envoy

The classic story of boy meets giant automated war robot. A superb slice of adventure in the same vein as J J Abram's Super 8


Abe

A psychopathic droid that goes looking for love in the all the wrong places. Dark, twisted and not all that safe for work. 


Doubles

A light-hearted look at the idea of parallel universes (yep, that's possible), as one reality begins to crash into another. Mocks the banality of life and stretches your grey matter. 

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