[Update: We’ve added a bit from speaking with Matthew Santoro about the trailer]

Matthew Santoro, a visual effects artist who worked on AVPR, 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer and Cutting Room, has been working on his own science fiction special effects-laden project called OFFLINE and today we have the trailer for it to show you.

In an update sent to /Film, Santoro revealed that OFFLINE was originally set to be a 15-minute short that would only hint at the larger world that the story takes place in. With virtually no budget, Santoro became personally involved in every aspect of the project himself and after showing off some of the cool scenes of the short, there was enough positive reaction to change his goal towards making it a full feature.

To garner interest in to help making the movie, they’ve put together a trailer which shows off a bunch of the cool stuff for the movie. Check it out and see what you think:

There’s a lot of cool stuff and neat shots in the trailer and the style of it is pretty unique. With a real budget, I think this has the potential to be something good and I hope the movie gets picked up to be made in full.

The synopsis of the film from the official website reads as follows:

“The future is not some place we are going to, but one we are creating.”

In this future, the world is dying a slow and ugly death. In an effort to cope or perhaps out of pure denial, humanity has become increasingly obsessed with mass media.

The Internet has evolved into an all-consuming visceral experience where every one’s perception of the world around them is fully customized. The brown smog in the sky can be easily ignored when a beautiful sunset is projected through your optic nerve, courtesy of the Naneuron Corporation.

But like all systems there are glitches. Someone or something is disrupting the feed; a Ghost in the machine. A group of extremists have risen up, led by young man named Maro. Defiant and charismatic, he has seemingly endless promise until he unexpectedly surrenders.

All enemies of the state are processed for reprogramming.  Those like Maro who are physically and mentally gifted enough are transformed into counter-terrorism soldiers. His memories are erased. His body is enhanced. His humanity is destroyed. Maro has become the perfect weapon.

Until he begins communicating with the glitches, hearing whispers that lead him on a journey through the depths of his own subconscious. Trapped in the midst of a hellish nightmare, he must find a way to regain his identity and take down the system once and for all. But at what price comes freedom?

The plot sounds interesting and it seems to reflect on ideas we saw in The Matrix.

There are a few things that I love about this. One being the originality of it which we seemingly see little of nowadays in Hollywood and second, I love when talented folks spend incredible amounts of time and effort on personal passion projects. In speaking with Santoro about the trailer, he explained a little bit of how much work it takes to create what we see in the trailer:

“I’ve been bleeding over this thing for the past year and it’s so great to hear this kind of response… This kind of thing really means a lot to me. I don’t think people realize that there are parts of this project that I literally filmed in my apartment using cardboard boxes, cheap hardware store lights, and a half-broken fog machine. I built the costumes using model parts and superglue. Most of the time my actors where doubling as crew even my dad (Charlie Santoro) who was playing that scary guy with the silver hair. I did whatever I needed to do in order to get the job done, and that’s all that mattered to me.”

Knowing this, imagine what we could see if given studio financing and real resources to bring to life the ideas of Matthew Santoro in the best way possible. I look forward to seeing movement on this project.

What do you think of the trailer and is it worthy of being made into a full feature film?

Source: /Film, OFFLINE Official Website

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