Student Sci-Fi Film Competition 2023

The Student Sci-Fi Film Competition is already an integral part of the Future Gate programme. The festival wants to give a platform to young filmmakers and introduce their works to the general public. This year, you can also look forward to a collection of the best work by emerging directors in Czechia and Slovakia.


director Daniel Geisseder, 2022, 3 min., Filmová akademie Miroslava Ondříčka v Písku

The story takes place in a large city affected by an unknown calamity that has made it uninhabitable. The once lively and rich city has become a ruin, in which only damaged buildings with broken windows and barricaded doors remain. Its inhabitants left little evidence of their former existence. The only thing we can see moving in this abandoned city is an exploring little robot that is trying to find something rare. The area he must explore is vast, so it won’t be an easy task. The robot sets out to search the wreckage and various nooks and crannies with great determination and stamina, but only time will tell if it succeeds.

It’s a Match

director Michael Klemm, 2023, 15 min., Slezská univerzita v Opavě

The world is ruled by artificial intelligence in the near future. In addition to running a smart household and helping with everyday activities, she can also find perfect love, the so-called perfect match, on the modern dating site Blinder. Adam, a young man living only with his voice assistant Lucy, is also looking for the perfect match. However, there’s one problem that is bothering Adam. Lucy can’t find Adam’s perfect match, even though it should be easy in this modern world. Something must be wrong.

Fourth Room

director Adam Kůs, Matyáš Vivodík, 2022, 12 min., Filmová akademie Miroslava Ondříčka v Písku

In 2079, the world is shrouded in thick, smoggy fog, cities are rundown and there is no sign of life. Two explorers in protective clothing and technology of the near future go through the remains of human dwellings, and apartment after apartment looking for any hope for the future of the human race.


director Mikuláš Hrdlička, Petr Vlček, 2023, 5 min., FAMU

A dystopian story set in an abandoned subway. After a man discovers the first anomalies, he decides to enter the unknown and put his physical and mental state to the test. He boards the subway, which takes him to the realm of timelessness. He desperately tries to cope with the new concept of time and space, but this test is harder than he thought.


director Gabriel Malík, 2023, 17 min., Filmová akademie Miroslava Ondříčka v Písku

Val and Alex make a living as modern-day treasure hunters in a dystopian future. They strive to find long-forgotten technology from past civilizations and subsequently sell it. While exploring many years’ worth of abandoned laboratories, Val accidentally activates an experimental device that transports her to seemingly random locations at random intervals. She is unable to turn off the device, so she communicates with her senior colleague Alex through a transmitter to figure out what to do. Another problem for Val is that by activating the device, she also triggered planetary defense, including patrolling drones that can quickly neutralize her if they find her. Eventually, Alex discovers that this device is extremely valuable and there is only one way to deactivate it in order to sell it on the black market. That option is to kill its current carrier.

Somnio Ergo Sum

director Michal Špitálský, 2023, 3 min., Northumbria University

An AI takes millions of inputs and rehashes them into something semi-new. The same thing human brain does when sleeping. Humans call it “dreams”. Michal Špitálský’s short experimental film follows the surrealist tradition of finding inspiration in the human subconscious and contains only a loose plot constructed from the artist’s dreams. The film is a digital stop-motion animation in a dadacollage style. In addition to that, all elements of the film have been generated by artificial intelligence models (simulating dream generation in our brains) and then reworked by the human hand. In this way, the film touches on themes such as originality and the function of algorithms as an artist’s tool.

Beyond the Border

director Dominik Zbořil, 2023, 27 min., Univerzita Tomáše Bati ve Zlíně

It’s the year 2032. In the People’s Republic of Czechia, people are denied all fundamental rights. The right to opinion. The right to life. To freedom. People are fleeing from the oppression of this totalitarian regime across the heavily guarded border into the state of Zlín, but many of them do not survive the journey to paradise. Twenty-year-old Miro wants to try to escape with his friend Juraj, but he struggles not only with his own fear but also with his conscience. Emigration would mean leaving his beloved mother, who is also in trouble with the regime because of her low social credit. Miro faces the most difficult choice of his life: to stay, or to leave? The hopeless situation drives him to a desperate solution.

Short sci-fi films by iShorts 2023

This year’s edition will also feature the traditional iShorts selection of short films. And it’s truly going to be a ride – you can expect the alien and the supernatural, and forces of evil and human love. The power of gravity and the desire to conquer distant worlds and to control new technologies and the future. This time we have focused on European short films that transcend established genre categories.

Crazy Crabs from Outer Space (Finland) Director: Magdaleena Jakkila | Producer: Johan-Sebastian Rintala | Cast: Lena Labart, Tuomas Rinta-Panttila, Saana Koivisto | Year: 2022 | Lenght: 23 min

As an impending invasion of space crabs threaten Earth, Pirjo and her alien pet crab Sebastian attempt a desperate escape. The Land of Milk and Honey (Belgium) Director: Isabelle Nouzha | Producer: Fragments asbl, Isabelle Nouzha, Zoo Théâtre | Cast: Olindo Bolzan, Romain David, Jérôme De Falloise | Year: 2022 | Lenght: 11 min | Animation

After a series of massive destruction the inhabitable territories left are protected by huge walls of separation. In between these walls, there is on one side a population of destitute survivors and on the other, elites willing to transform the popular rage into a workforce.

Growing (France) Director: Agata Wieczorek | Producer: Le Fresnoy | Cast: Nina Andre, Dominika Walo, Nela Wieczorek | Year: 2021 | Lenght: 18 min

Ewa takes up training in maternity nursing at medical simulation center. In the life-likerealm, pregnancy and labour are repetitively performed by artificial bodies in automatic procedures that allow no interruption. Recognizing human features in a pregnancy simulation female mannequin gives a start to a series of events that makes Ewa radically question the simulated maternity as a predestined experience.

Heartless (Island) Director: Haukur Björgvinsson | Producer: Haukur Björgvinsson, Tinna Hrönn Proppé | Cast: Jóhann Kristófer Stefánsson, Bríet Elfar, Nanna Kristín Magnúsdóttir | Year: 2021 | Lenght: 16 min

Young couple Anna and Gunnar live in a society in which people are assigned a new spouse in a lottery every seven years. Full of heartache the couple lives their biggest nightmare in face of life with a new partner.

The Wooden Ghost (Česká republika) Director: David Daenmark | Producer: FAMU | Cast: Tomáš Pichl | Year: 2023 | Lenght: 11 min

An atmospheric film about a stubborn carver working on a woman’s effigy and an uninvited visitor in the middle of a dark night. Once the shutters fly open, strange things begin to happen. The horror short is a variation on EA Poe’s poem, The Raven, and cleverly combines live action with animated scenes.