Born Digital: First Cuts
Eleven innovative short films about the digital experience, commissioned by the BFI, BBC Four and BBC Arts to mark the 30th anniversary of the World Wide Web in 2019.
As part of BFI’s Born Digital celebrations, BFI and BBC, in collaboration with Plimsoll Productions, have partnered to offer new and emerging filmmakers the opportunity to present their distinct and compelling viewpoints on what it means to be ‘born digital’.
These exciting films tackle a range of topics relating to the connected world; exploring themes such as AI, data, privacy, isolation, community, love and more. Additionally the films offer a commentary on a range of social issues, reflecting the diversity of the UK and are a mixture of genres including drama, documentary and experimental filmmaking.
The narratives explore the digital landscape through the eyes of both digital natives and those who experienced the pre-internet world. Filmmakers have been challenged to reflect on, respond to and capture the experience of living in a digital environment, as well as show how they have been shaped by it or even resisted it. The filmmakers have also emphasised the tools, techniques and visual grammar developed over the last 30 years of technological change.
An upbeat drama about 14-year-old oddball Toni who is having a tough time with the bullies at school. One day, the internet and a passion for performance saves her.
A drama set in the near future where virtual reality allows a person to see life through the eyes of someone very different, which questions whether experiences become shared or commodified.
Set in the undisclosed future where developments in technology mean less personal privacy, Skin explores questions of our autonomy and essential humanness – and what it is to experience love and loss in the futuristic age.
A short documentary exploring the challenges of being young and chronically ill in a carefully curated online culture. When you’re too ill for IRL, where do you turn?
A short docudrama exploring the history of sex in the homosexual community from the 1970s to the present day, and how the internet has changed the way gay men meet forever.
In this drama about a cutting-edge gig-work app, Lena embarks on her new job as a “Roger”. Unnerved by her new role, she strives to build a relationship with her employer through unexpected means.
Short film about the evolution of identity and online exploration of sexuality in the early 00s, constructed from the director’s own teenage video diaries.
Without Bounds to Beat is an experimental documentary that recounts a town’s revival of an ancient folk tradition, placing it in contrast to today’s digital technologies.
In search of an identity, Candy wanders through the digital landscape, leaving fragments of herself behind in this experimental short drama.
A documentary on one of Scotland’s most isolated and breathtaking islands, where all 35 residents prepare for the remarkable roll-out of fibre-optic broadband.