Animated sci-fi short based on 'Blindsight' by Peter Watts

Originally published at:

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Well the visible bits were, but the average 80+% of black screen left much to the imagination.

The soundscape was good, though much of the dialogue was as unintelligible as the visuals were unvisual.

The credits at the end? Why bother - utterly illegible.

I’m sure there’s a fantastically wonderful thing in there somewhere, but the triumph of style over communicable content obscures it badly.

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Blindsight was an excellent novel that was also equal parts terrifying/depressing. Great concept, excellent writing, and explores a notion I really don’t want to think about (What if intelligence is not evolutionarily a good thing?).


(What if intelligence is not evolutionarily a good thing?).

This will be a difficult topic for a movie that is designed to actually make money. People won’t get it without lots of pew pew pew and whizzzing spaceships.

(Although I was pessimistic that Hollywood could do justice to Story of Your Life, but Arrival was pretty good.)

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Yeah, having read the book, I’d say that it’s not “Summer blockbuster” movie material - hella expensive to make due to the SFX needs, but the visuals will not be whiz-bang excitement. It would be more suited to a Halloween release as sci-fi/horror, what with the dark visuals, grim message, the actual vampires who aren’t even the bad guys, they’re just the icing on the cake of doom, the alien monsters that can be invisible, and are definitely not your friend, and the almost horror movie formulaic way everybody dies, one at a time, until a single survivor escapes into a hostile world he’s not sure isn’t worse than the approaching alien threat. Billed as a horror movie, it might be able to turn something close to a profit. (Oh who are we kidding, no movie turns a profit, creative book keeping ensures that, for tax reasons.)

Definitely not a cheerful story, but surprisingly hard to stop reading once you’ve started. I didn’t even know there was a sequel until now, so now I have to go find it, because the last book left me depressed and creeped out, and somehow I can’t help but dive back in, even knowing that the next one will probably make it worse.


Arrival was good. It wasn’t until I was about 40 minutes into the movie before I realized that it was based on Story of Your Life. I thought they did it some justice, though it was probably one of the best SF sort stories of the past 20 years so hard to match.

Blindsight and Echopraxia would be good as an sf/horror miniseries, as long as the producers could manage not to fuck it up by shoehorning some bogus love story or (worse) human/vampire love story into it.

Possibly one of the bleakest endings I’ve experienced in a book I thought was excellent. I usually don’t like bleak, but Watts is special.


A very challenging book. I read it a few years ago and found it very disturbing and more than a bit spooky and left my mind buzzing with strange ideas. I reread it a few years later and it felt completely different! A book worth rereading every decade perhaps.

Well worth reading. I enjoyed the visuals in the animation. Evocative.


Hard to work out whats going on there, both videos autoplayed at the same time and the animated movie restarted after I tried to stop it.

But I get the impression that Peter is very upset about his publishers, the movie makers, me, and perhaps everybody.

Maybe he should write more? He would sell more books that way.

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He did! He’s even got copies of many of his published short stories and four of his novels available for free off his website (in the extras section).

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Thanks. The kindle book is only $1.50 so I got it. To the extent that the movie was an ad for the book, it (and this thread) worked.

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