As artists and filmmakers continue to integrate new technologies into their practice, the complicated interplay between the real world and augmented reality has gradually turned into one of the most compelling motifs contemporary directors seek to explore in their movies.
In what could have easily been an episode from the popular series Black Mirror, Strange Beasts is a cautionary – but equally riveting – tale of the macabre dangers of getting too immersed in augmented reality.
Directed by British filmmaker Magali Barbé, the short sci-fi flick opens as an unassuming video commercial for a bleeding-edge AR technology that lets people replace their real pets with virtual ones. But things quickly take a turn for the worse once the boundary between what’s real and fake starts to wash away.
Combining traditional filmmaking with advanced visual effects and optical trickeries, the movie puts a psychological spin on augmented reality by taking us inside the deteriorating mind of a man lost in technology.
Watch Strange Beasts in the video section above.
You can check the full cast behind the movie on its IMDB page here – and in case you liked the glorious critters flying around, Barbé has shared a series of design mockups on the movie’s official page.