Censor explores a dark potential future where censors go to the limit of VR violence.
The Sci-Fi London Film Festival will be showing a virtual reality (VR) film that explores the consequences of immersive violence and censorship in a dark cyberpunk future.
The film exists in a potential future where some violent crimes have been linked to videogamers. As a result, a new censorship bureau is created who employees are tasked with trying to take the sex and violence depicted to the utmost extreme.
Director Konsantin Shelepov spoke about the film as a warning, both of the consequences of censorship and of what exposure to violence of that level could potentially do to children. Shelepov says he chose a deliberately gritty, realistic style to emphasise the disturbing nature of the violence being depicted.
“What we did was a literalization of this artificial brutality,” Shelepov said, “There are so much murders on screen that we don’t even take those as murders. One character kills another is just a line in a script. Sometimes people even find ‘bodycount’ funny, but it is not. That’s why our approach was to emphasize each stab and each drop of blood so that the audience literally felt the idea.”
The film also explores the idea of what exposure to this kind of immersive violence might do to the people whose job it is to censor this content. The filmmakers decided to look at the idea of ‘Who watches the watchmen?’.
Shelepov continues: “Just like bookprinting, firearms, cars and the Internet required the legislation to change, AR and VR will also affect the way we live. Our movie shows some of the dangerous perspective. But we are not politicians or activists, we are just filmmakers, we ask questions that probably nobody can answer for now. But soon there will be answers, for sure.”