A series of experimental short films that explore post-apocalyptic worlds.
Oat Studios by Rick Schoutinga on October 23, 2023 Rated A 7 / 10.
There’s a series on Netflix with the somewhat strange title Oats Studios. After the first episode you want to continue watching, but then the confusion begins, which is completed in the third episode.
Oats Studios is not a traditional series as you know, but rather a collection of short films to gauge the audience’s viability as a feature film. The title is the name of the film studio of director Neill Blomkamp, who uses his ideas to gather feedback from the audience to improve the project so it can one day be produced. Make no mistake, the concepts are executed at a high level (most of them), how else can you get honest opinions.
“Netflix is not the place to test short films.”
The concept of Oats Studios as a Netflix series is not a good one. Honestly, Netflix is not the place to test short films, YouTube is and that’s what happened. The Oats Studios YouTube channel has all the shorts (and more), including explainers and background. Lively discussions about the shorts arise in the comments.
The 2017 films have since been available on YouTube, collected by/for Netflix, and released as a series in 2021. They are both smart and stupid from a marketing point of view: people connect with films more easily, but because they don’t understand the purpose, that misses the point.
Rakka, Firebase, Zygote, and Adam can be expanded into a feature film with only minimal modifications. Why Cooking with Bill, God (however funny and successful, with Sharlto Copley as God), Bad Boss, and The Capture were added is a guess: the drawings are not “Blomkamp”, they do not fit in with the rest and how they could be made into films is a mystery. That leaves the 4-minute city of Gdańsk, which is split in two, and is so minimal you can’t find anything about it.
As a fan of Neill Blomkamp you must have seen Oat Studios. The four successful short films bear his signature unmistakably: science fiction, action, dystopia, and aliens combined. A wonderful journey of discovery in less than two hours.
The question remains what material was used for the film six years later. Adam, Gdansk and Kapture use digital images a lot and we see this again in Demonic (2021), unfortunately this has been the case so far and we have to wait for the films Rakka, Firebase, Zygote and Adam.
Available on Netflix
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