For the 2017 edition of the Annual Summit of the World VR Forum, a VR Cinema has been implemented with a selection of more than 50 short-films that were screened through all four days of the Summit at the Red Bull Dome with a Red Bull bar, right outside of Le Regent Congress Center, in Crans-Montana, Switzerland, 11 – 14 May, 2017.
Our goal was to implement a VR Cinema with a new system of synchronized screening, allowing up to 20 people to watch the same film at the exact same time, and to react to the films together. We created a schedule with sessions of different themes including VR experiences and films.
The extensive, offbeat cinematographic menu screened at the VR Cinema has been selected by Maria Guta, WVRF’s Director of Programming. Each film has been reviewed and chosen to fit a specific session with a theme. The films have been selected from a number of producers to show the potential of VR, and the evolution that occurred since the last edition to the public.
The VR Cinema consisted of 15 sessions, themed: Fantastic Science, Electric South, Vive La France, Refugees Welcome, Drama No Drama, We Love Documentaries, Music Videos, Special Feature, Action Kicks, Defrost, GoPro, Commercial Break, Experimental, Baobab and VR for Good.
Among the audience’s favourite films were Ashes to Ashes from the Netherlands by Submarine Channel from the Drama No Drama session and My Brother’s Keeper from the USA, by Alex Meader and Connor Hair from the Action Kicks session.
Ashes to Ashes was a surreal tragicomedy about a dysfunctional family handling their grandfather’s dying wish. The film won the public over with its unique point of view on family relationships, as it was shown through the eyes of the deceased.
My Brother’s Keeper, on the other hand, was an immersive narrative about two estranged brothers who, fighting on the opposite sides of the American Civil War, unknowingly reunite on the battlefield at Antietam for the last time. Making the viewers virtually feel the harsh realities of being in the middle of a battlefield, thanks to its striking 360° cinematography, the film did not go unnoticed.
“It was a rich selection of worldwide VR content,” said Guta.