VR Cinema

8. 4. 2022, 12:50
Ondřej Moravec



The VR projects program is designed as a time-limited exhibition. Out of all offered slots, you may choose the one that fits you most, come at the given time and spend 60 minutes in our VR space exploring projects of your choice. It's then only up to you which projects you wish to during your time slot. According to the runtime of specific VR films, you can manage, based on your choice, to watch 1-4 films per hour. Our volunteers on the spot will help you with advice.

For one time slot, a maximum of 8 people can buy a ticket.


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This year, for the second time, virtual reality projects come back to Febiofest. This time around, they take on a new form. Unlike last year, when the selection was focused exclussively on 360° films, this year's selection reaches out to interactive projects on the brink of film and gaming. In the total of 11 projects, which have been successfully screened at festivals like Venice, Sundance or Tribeca, the viewers will visit famous waterfalls near Rome, find out how it feels to be watched by an intelligent drone or explore what the so-called“bystanding syndrome” means. The VR project Cosmogonic will be screened as international premiere.


directed by: Davide Rapp / country: Itálie / language: Italian, English / subtitles: English / year: 2021 / runtime: 15 min

A unique experimental collage of shots from one of the most famous film locations – the Monte Gelato Waterfalls.

The Monte Gelato Waterfalls are found close to Rome and Italian filmmakers have shot hundreds of films here so far. The director Davide Rapp selected 180 from them, found the footage of the waterfalls themselves and edited them in a special, overlaying pattern in the 360° video format. The effect is an original medley with the waterfalls staying in their place, yet with the action around them changing – from an alien invasion to erotic scnes appearing and receding as if they were invisible ghosts of this place.


The director Davide Rapp started his career outside film, as an architect. His first success was an architectional video study in which he used 500 various film clips overlaid over each other. This method is also implemented in his VR essay on Monte Gelato.


directed by: Alton Glass / country: USA / language: English / subtitles: none / year: 2021 / runtime: 16 min

How it would look if the convicts were to be let loose under the watch of special intelligent drones?

The year is 2025 and LA Police is implementing a technological novelty: the first intelligent armed drone-robot with the task of continually watching over convicts released on parole. The first one of these is the hacker Cassius Moore. Can a drone fully make up for the work of a living police officer? And can it assess dramatic situations in a better way than humans, avoiding unwanted losses of lives? The action sci-fi movie is a capturing commentary on cases of police aggression toward minorities not only in the USA.


Alton Grass is an American XR media guru whose projects often deal with issues of freedom of speech and topics related to ethnic minorities. His previous project,The March, was an immersive installation in which he gave life to the famous motto by Martin Luther King, Jr., “I have a dream”.


directed by: Gina Kim / country: South Korea, USA / language: English, Korean / subtitles: English / year: 2021 / runtime: 12 min

A horror-like visit of the so-called “Monkey House” where women suspected of having sexually transmitted diseases were held during the Korean War.

In the 1970s Korea, tens of brothels for US soldiers had sprung up. The girls were made to wear their ID numbers like prison inmates and cards providing information on not having STDs. Those who were suspected of having contracted a disease were locked in the so-called “Monkey House” where many of them died following inappropriate treatment. Hundreds of others tried to flee or took their lives. The VR film by Gina Kim introduces us into one of such currently abandonded houses where spectres of abused women live on.


The audiovisual projects by the Korean artist Gina Kim have been presented at over 100 international film festivals including Venice, Cannes, Berlin, Locarno or Sundance, among others. Her previousVR film Blodless, which also dealt with consequences of the Korean war, won the Best VR Screenplay at Venice IFF.


directed by: Ziad Touma / country: Canada, France / language: English, French / subtitles: none / year: 2021 / runtime: 40 min

Four passengers on a train meet at one table. What is going on in their minds and where do their stories intersect?

Let the ride begin. At its start, the viewers are challenged to choose a point of view of one of the characters – a man, a woman, a child or an old lady. From there, a journey in an open compartment unfolds, with the viewers slowly sumberging into the mind of a chosen character. What is the girl's opinion on maternity? Why is the man having problems to start relationships? Is the old lady going to remember an old lover? And how does the child deal with the parents' constant fighting?


The Lebanese-born screenwriter, director and producer living in Canada has a wide range of film activities. He first became known by his feature debut, Saved by the Belles, that earned him several Canadian national film awards.


directed by: Violeta Ayala / country: Australia, Bolivia, India / language: English / subtitles: none / year: 2021 / runtime: 30 min

An immersive trip into Bolivian prison changes into a waxworks of mysterious creatures.

The San Sebastian prison in the town of Cochamamba, Bolivia, houses about 1,000 inmates. This intricate maze, hower, rather resembles a bizarre surrealistic lair with its own church, school, electronics shop or marketplace, among others. The viewer becomes one of the prisoners sentenced for cocaine trafficking. After putting on a theatrical mask, they descend into an imaginative whirl in which a difference between reality and dream or between guilt and innocence disappear.


The Bolivian-Australian filmmaker has been mainly involved in making documentaries, with her film Cocaine Prison presented at the prestigious Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). Already back then, she treated the subject of prison life in Bolivia. She went expand on this topic in her VR project.


directed by: Nim Shapira, Roi Lev / country: Israel, Canada, Germany / language: English / subtitles: none / year: 2021 / runtime: 10 min

Have you ever needed to provide first aid, but instead of doing so, you shockingly stood by, observing the accident? You were most likely struck by the “bystanding syndrome”.

In 2009, an Israeli rowing champion Jasmine Feingold went to sail down a river. Due to a collision, her boat overturned, and she could not get out of it, left sumberged under the water. The accident was watched by tens of bystanders who were observing the drowning woman for over 4 minutes. None of them dared to help her, though. This VR project sets to revisit the accident site and the minds of the individual onlookers. Why do they not step in? What holds them back? What are they afraid of? Is anyone going to dare and jump into the river to save Jasmine?


Under the name of the Nim and Roi studio, this Israeli-American pair creates immersive projects focused on social impact. They are based in Brooklyn, NYC, and Nim Shapira herself holds several Webby and Clio awards.


directed by: Eyal Geva / country: Israel / year: 2021 / language: English / subtitles: English / runtime: 60 minut

A retro-futuristic crime story noir in which as robotic private eyes, you can set to solve the crimes of the local mafia.

There are no more people living in Retropolis, only weird (and more or less functioning) robots who are however strikingly similar to their human ascendants. There is a lot of crime going on in the city, so the viewer as the robot detective Philip Log sets to make attempts in smearing it. This VR projekt bordering on film and a classing gaming adventure is a playful and satorical tribute to films noir and sci-fi dystopic epics.


Israeli artist Eyal Geva founded the Peanut Button studio and along with two other colleagues, she decided to work on projects focused on motives from old films and computer games. The Secret of Retropolis is her first project.


directed by: Paweł Szarzyński / country: Poland / year: 2022 / runtime: 8 min

How would the robotic cruel rule look like in the eyes of the famous sci-fi author Stanisław Lem?

There is a colony of huge robots living on the planet of Actinuria, headed by the ominous king Archithorius. His mind is continually eaten away by paranoia of fears of conspiracy. Therefore, he decides to have everyone dress into special uranium armoury so that in case more robots flock together, it would lead to an explosion. The sci-fi short story by Stanisław Lem in VR form is a timely metaphor on the curreent crisis of democracy and growing radicalization of the ruling classes.


Animator and graphic designer who has been involved in advertising business for a long time, cooperating with companies like e.g. Prodigous, FCB, National Geographic or Discovery Channel. He is the holder of European Design Awards.


directed by: Mengtai Zhang, Lemon Guo / country: USA / year: 2021 / runtime: 30 min

A unique inside look into a Chinese facility with brutal treatment of Internet-related addictions.

As a teenager, the director Mengtai Zhang was going through some tough times. His parents were getting divorced and he was escaping into the world of PC games more and more often. The disgruntled parents finally decided to send him to a special facility where he had to be treated from his online addiction. In this VR simulation, we follow Mengtai over the hostile space of a Chinese mental hospital that is changing into a prison over time with no chance of escaping.


Mengtai Zhang is a Chinese-born multidisciplinary artist based in New York City. In his immersive projects, he combines the media of sculpture, sound and simulation. He intertwines personal and socio-political narratives. His work has been shown at prestigious festivals like IDFA or Sundance.


directed by: Asif Kapadia, Nick Abadzis / country: Velká Británie / year: 2021 / runtime: 15 min

A bittersweet story of a scientist fighting for the life of Laika, the first female dog in space.

A grid in front of her eyes and a gentle up-and-down swing. In one of the first scenes, we are let into the body of the famous Laika being carried in a box into a Soviet lab. The leading female scientist instantly falls in love with her. What follows is a story of great friendship thwarted by the Cold War and the Soviet-American conflict over the outer space. The film is a VR adaptation of the famous graphic novel by Nick Abadzis.


The renowned British artist became famous mainly thanks to his documentary portraits of celebrities. For Amy, he received an Oscar, BAFTA Award, Grammy and the European Film Award. Laika is his VR debut.


directed by: Lui Avallos / country: Brazil, Portugal, Italy, France / year: 2021 / runtime: 9 min

VR camera as a diary? An intimate confession on the changes brought upon us by the pandemic

Has it ever happened to you over the last two years that you were stroking someone's face, yet instead of the skin, you felt only a display of your computer or cell phone? The same thing happened to the director Lui Avallos. Topics like the ignorance of political representation toward Covid, virtualized sexuality or creeping introvercy due to endless lockdowns have become the leading themes of this unconventional VR diary.


Brazilian screenwriter, director and multimedia artist. He is currently studying multimedia art at the Faculty of Fine Arts at Lisbon University. Handwritten is his first VR film.

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