No Guarantee – Short Film Review

Do you ever think that one day death not be such a finality? We all know that one day, our bodies are going to transgress, transform, and transcend into a different plane. A virtual one, perhaps? Where our consciousness leaves the mesh of bones and muscle and becomes part of the virtual world? It’s a scary but encompassing thought where technology could push us beyond our own boundaries and further into immortality.

Many science fiction movies explore this transference of fleshed matter to the digital self and how humans can escape their death sentences and decay. Short film No Guarantee tackles the theme of loss, love, and living in such a truncated yet visceral way.

Winner of the Sci-Fi London’s Short Film Challenge, No Guarantee revolves around a living hell that has romped across Earth. Humanity is at a loss as people are dying from rampant diseases and crime. The only way out of not dying is to be accepted into a virtual heaven known as Cloud 9. Those with enough money can buy their way into this synthetic paradise. But can the company who runs Cloud 9 be trusted?

No Guarantee starring Alice Henley and Justin Marosa
Crafted by Nick Mather and Stuart Black, the film is a stunning depiction of a dystopian world ravaged by disease and greed. At the centre of this dissolving world is a futuristic love story where Virgil and Mary, played evocatively well by Alice Henley and Justin Marosa, battle against the elements to survive.  As they dabble in crime to get access to Cloud 9, Virgil’s degenerative disease places them in the core of desperation and necessity. In this essence, the short film soars and crafts an intriguing, palpable, and emotional story of love beyond planes and bodies. With Henley and Marosa crafting a believable connection between the distraught and stricken pair, No Guarantee feels realistic and that adds more to the tension and captivation.

The biggest problem with No Guarantee is that there isn’t more of it. The film has a lot of promise and themes of turmoil that you wish to nestle and explore longer within. The world they have built within a lowly 5 minutes is layered with technology and bureaucracy that we wish to know more about. It’s a plentiful film but not exactly a fully-fleshed one in the sense that there is so much more that we wish to know long after the credits roll.

Hopefully, Mather and Black will team up to pursue a feature film revolving around this film. Certainly, with the splendid cinematography, incredible performances, and a tale completely compelling, No Guarantee will see a richer and bountiful come to cinema screens.


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