6min | Short, Horror | 19 Jan 2021 (USA) | Short
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: N/A
Director: Josh Tanner
Writers: Josh Tanner, Jade van der Lei
Stars: David Normand, Joey Vieira
IMDb summary: An astronaut encounters a terrifying anomaly approaching the International Space Station.
PLEASE BE AWARE BEFORE YOU READ ON WE ARE NOT SPOILER-FREE. THANK YOU.
Decommissioned Short Film Review
I’m a little sceptical when it comes to movies that are “based on true events”. Usually, the real event is a lot less dramatic than its film or TV show adaptation and in some cases, barely touches on the true event itself. This is totally understandable. A creative team of people working on a film would need some flexibility with the material to make it worth watching. And Decommissioned is the best six minutes you’ll spend on a short film.
I liked Decommissioned because the writers borrowed inspiration from the true event and twisted it into something that grabs hold of you from the very first second and doesn’t let go. So the “SuitSat” event this film is inspired by actually did happen and you can read all about it on Wikipedia. Somehow that makes the short film even creepier to me. The fact that a spacesuit fitted with audio receivers was left alone in space just feels so unsettling. Perhaps that’s why Decommissioned delivers such a punch in the gut when you watch it.
Decommissioned begins with an ISS astronaut looking out at space through his Nikon camera when he notices something floating off to the Earth’s left. He focuses on the object and zooms in and can see that it is a floating astronaut’s suit. He communicates with Houston telling them that he is seeing “SuitSat” which can’t be possible because the suit used in “Suitsat” burned up on re-entry years ago. So if Suitsat was burned up years ago, what exactly is the astronaut looking at?
This sets the foundation for the rest of the film, which gets pretty intense as the Astronaut tries to make sense of what he sees. And of course, something very unexpected happens, and well, we don’t want to spoil the entire experience for you.
Running behind this short film’s scenes is the power of the Unreal Engine used primarily in video game production. So it makes total sense just how crisp and clear the imagery in the film is. It looks extremely authentic, right down to the astronaut looking out at the Earth from the ISS. The film itself is only six minutes long, but it’s six minutes of intense, nightmarish imagery that we guarantee will unsettle you even if you’re a die-hard horror fan. Brilliantly crafted, scary as hell, and if we could request a feature film of this, we would get behind that 100%.
If you’re feeling curious or just wandering why we’ve rated this short film 5/5 stars, you can check out Decommissioned right here on Vimeo: