Scott Batemen has much to be thankful for.
Based in New York’s Hudson Valley, Scott has directed the feature films 5000 Space Aliens (2021), The Bateman Lectures on Depression (2018), and You Your Brain & You (2015). He also wrote the humor book Disalmanac: A Book of Fact-Like Facts (Penguin/TarcherPerigee, 2013), was a one-day Jeopardy! champion, and, won $100,000 (and a cruise) on Who Wants To Be a Millionaire.
In addition to its recent "Best Feature" win at the Medusa Film Festival, Chuck Foster of Film Threat gave 5000 Space Aliens an outstanding review. Chuck wrote:
"As animation technology becomes both better and more accessible, the animation itself will morph, mutate and break down whatever barriers once defined the genre. Director and animator Scott Bateman has pushed the art form one step further with his mesmerizing pop art motion picture collage 5000 Space Aliens.
Imagine if Andy Warhol’s silkscreens came to life and danced before your eyes. Essentially, this is 86 minutes of exactly that. 5000 one-second clips, all centered on a human form, join together in a string of motion and color propelled by a driving electronic music score. Faces flash before your eyes, barely registering in your brain before the next image demands attention in an almost subliminal fashion. This isn’t Pixar and cute singing animals. This is an emotional rainbow brought to life as something new and exciting – the way of the future.
Now the lack of a narrative structure for nearly an hour and a half may seem off-putting to the public at large, but remember, this is only the beginning. Now that we know that this style can be done, done well and, most importantly, it works, the next challenge will be to see how it can be applied to tell a story. Admittedly, in this current incarnation, it doesn’t seem meant to be consumed in a theater as the focus of attention. Rather, it would work well as visuals in a cyberpunk bar or a gallery opening, something that can play continuously in a loop so that those who aren’t completely focused on the film will always see something new.
As it stands, Bateman’s booming soundtrack is the thread holding everything together. Pulsing electronic arpeggios waft over loud, powerful beats, betraying an interest in the whole of electronic music instead of just one style. Shades of synthpop, industrial music, EDM, IDM, krautrock, synthpunk, and trip-hop can all be heard in the movements of this oscillator-driven symphony. Apparently, Bateman did the entire thing in GarageBand, and this is its only fault. Some actual hardware would have added tones and textures that you just can’t get with a digital audio workstation. There are also some parts where the drums unnecessarily get in the way of the synth sounds emanating from the speakers. But, you know, COVID and money, so it’s understandable and, hey, it’s punk rock to use what’s around you rather than dump cash on new gear.Ultimately, though, this is just the beginning. Collaborations between musicians, filmmakers, photographers, artists, and actors are all ripe for this groundbreaking style. Scott Bateman has truly done something wonderful and exciting, and now it’s up to the animators and artists out there to take it as far as it will go. Thanks to 5000 Space Aliens, the future has landed, and a whole new frontier stands before us."
Our thanks to Chuck Foster for that ink ... and here's wishing Scott Bateman, and the 5000 Space Aliens' team, a truly extraterrestrial adventure!
To view the Film Threat review, click here: https://filmthreat.com/reviews/5000-space-aliens/
To view Lucas's other projects, visit: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm11739610/
To view the 5000 Space Aliens official webpage, click here: https://5000spacealiens.com/