MATTER OF FACT

PrintE-mail Written by Andrew Marshall

Matter of Fact was made for The Sci-Fi London Film Festival’s 48 Hour Film Challenge, where a short film had to be written, shot and edited within the two-day restriction, given a specific title and incorporate a certain prop and line of dialogue. Although not the overall winner, it made the final shortlist of ten, and it’s easy to see why.

The BNP wet dream story takes place in the near future where the UK is now under the rule of a party of right-wing racists who have vowed to purge the land of its blight of undesirables. “White is Right: Matter of Fact” goes their credo, and is heard in faint staccato echoing from the streets outside where protagonist Victor is holed up, presumably chanted by roving gangs of skinheads as they swarm the streets in jackbooted mobs to hunt down anyone deemed to have too much skin pigmentation.

Ethnic cleansing is often used as a euphemism for genocide, but be the perceived taint national, religious, racial or even cultural, orchestrating mass murder takes effort and co-ordination. It would be so much simpler for these modern-day Blackshirts if the country could be purified with greater efficiency, and the film suggests that ways far more insidious than mere violence can be used for the fascists to achieve their goal.

Science fiction has a long tradition of employment as a vehicle for social commentary, and in such a vein Matter of Fact tacitly asks us to ponder how absolute power could have been given over to such blinkered ignorance in the first place. We live in a country where many people take Britain First seriously, The Daily Mail is cited as a reliable source, and people with the least authority and influence are blamed for the nation’s biggest problems, so the average person displaying the required complacency required for it to happen is all too easy to envision. The film also feels like a concentrated episode of Black Mirror; although it might be fiction, it nevertheless portrays a future that’s terrifyingly plausible.

MATTER OF FACT / CERT: TBC / DIRECTOR: ADAM LANNON / SCREENPLAY: STUART BLACK, NICK MATHER / STARRING: JUSTIN MAROSA, ALICE HENLEY, HOWARD CORLETT, ANDY BAINBRIDGE / RELEASE DATE: TBC
 


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