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Shutting Down
Shutting Down (2008)
Movie
  • Director:
    Clarke M. Smith
  • Category:
  • Writer:
    Clarke M. Smith
  • Cast:
    Sacha Iskra,Kevin Rishel,Tom Shay
  • Time:
    16min
  • Year:
    2008
A short sci-fi satire set deep into the future when the sun is starting to burn out. Solar powered energy is causing major mechanical malfunctions, and life on earth as we know it, is in serious jeopardy. The story focuses on a housewife who encounters some of these bizarre malfunctions on a day when the sun takes a turn for the worse. And her very reality and existence is called into question.
Casts
Credited cast:
Sacha Iskra Sacha Iskra - Annie
Kevin Rishel Kevin Rishel - George Otto
Tom Shay Tom Shay - Don the Repairman
Kimberly Felipe Villanueva Kimberly Felipe Villanueva - Kay Otto

Shutting Down (2008)

When a character goes out of her front door, the exterior of the house is in an entirely different city.

Nanecele
Nanecele
Clarke M. Smith's 'Shutting Down' is a film at the end of the world; a micro-budgeted homage to all the great politically charged sci-fi films of the past like 'Logan's Run', 'Blade Runner', and 'Invasion of the Body Snatchers' but in a short format akin to those television horror and sci-fi anthologies of yesteryear like "The Twilight Zone", "Monsters", and "Tales from the Darkside" (an art form sadly missing from today's TV line-ups). With wry humor, poignant social commentary, and an interesting plot that moves along at an excellent pace, 'Shutting Down' is well worth watching.

The attractive Kimberly F. Villanueva stars as Kay Otto, a jaded housewife trapped in a world of middle class mediocrity sometime in the not-quite-near future. When the news reports coming from her futuristic 3-D television (with which she is markedly unimpressed) start warning of the possibility of a mysteriously unstable sun wreaking havoc, she hardly bats an eye. There's plumbing to be fixed, dishes to be done, fish to be fed, and breakfast to be consumed (from a flying saucer-shaped bowl, no less). The impending doom is more of an annoyance than something to worry about. After all, the newscaster tells us, "It could be up to three weeks before the sun burns out!" And speaking of flying saucers, they're here! "The influx of UFO sightings continues..." warns the Skynews TV announcer (who appears to be broadcasting from the living room in true 3-D fashion). But is Kay concerned? Pffft! Yesterday's news. It's just another humdrum day in middle-class paradise. By the time Don the Repairman (who independent sci-fi fans may recognize from one of Smith's earlier opuses, 'The Ethereal Plane') arrives to fix her "antique" sink, Kay seems almost hungry for something to break up the monotony...too bad for her the monotony is about to get worse- much worse.

In a quirky twist, everything Kay thinks she knows gets turned upside-down. Suddenly, she wants to hang on to the simple life— but with solar flares, flying saucers and the earth freezing over taking a backseat to a horrifying, unexplainable new problem, it may be too late for her, her husband, her neighbors, perhaps even the entire middle class population which does all the work and even the mysterious "upper echelon" who seem to reap all the benefits in their far-off, high-tech mansions.

As with most dark stories in the genre, don't expect the happiest ending- Smith doesn't sugar-coat his "out with a whimper just prior to a bang" vision of the future (there's an excellent creepy soundtrack to emphasize this), but you can expect to get the same uneasy feeling exploited by Fritz Lang's 'Metropolis'- the feeling that the masses are not truly in control of their own destiny- that an automaton is the perfect symbol for their plight- and that although we all want to be individuals, real and special, not just pawns, there is always someone (or something) ready to exploit us.