There are limitless possibilities and ideas for science fiction movies, simply because each one depends on two magic words – “what if”. And the answers to this cannot be quantified in any way; it is limited only by flights of fancy of the human brain which again knows no boundaries. Film makers usually stay within norms that the audience can visualize, going to absurd lengths will simply take out the interest factor.
Take two examples of ideas here that science fiction film makers generally depend on – the past and the future.
In the first case, it is possible to stay within certain limits. We all know that once upon a time dinosaurs ruled the earth and there were other creatures that have also been more or less outlined by scientific research. What film makers usually do is take the present and take it back in time. Dinosaurs replace dogs as pets or become so violent that they threaten to rip the world apart. And human beings face the wrath of their actions. These forms of movies grab the attention of the audience because it is easy to visualise dinosaurs since science has proved that they once ruled the earth and therefore intermingling human lives with them becomes that much easy and interesting. It is a matter of backing wild imagination with real world evidence.
The second case is that of futuristic plotting by the human brain, simply because it is venturing into the realms of the unknown. But here too, film makers have not strayed far beyond the areas of the possible. Sci-fi movies about three/four decades back showed human beings living in colonies in space. Now, men and women are spending years together in space stations that are being stocked from Mother Earth. Not too long ago, sci-fi was all about rockets with men zooming past Mars to outer unknown galaxies. Today, unmanned rockets are doing just that and the day is probably not far off when companies specialising in labour hire in Melbourne or anywhere else start recruiting skilled labour to pilot them. The success of such films are not based on the weird and the absurd, they are based on the audience visualising the exciting possibilities that what today is a myth can turn to reality in future.
Another area that never fails to spark attention and interest is disasters in any form – apocalypses, environmental disasters or machines going beyond control. There have been movies where tidal waves have wiped out entire civilizations and fires have destroyed towns. There have been movies with submarines and warships that have gone out of control and wrecked havoc on the populace. All such movies are depicted on a massive scale to keep the audience on the edge of their seats.
Cloning and genetic engineering too are other sci-fi ideas that are bound to catch up in a big way. Man would always like to know the different forms that population can head to in future. Such films are based on advancements that have already been made in science with an additional twist of the film maker’s imagination that takes the plot beyond the territory of reality.
There are many such sci-fi ideas that can keep cropping up. After all, it is based on the principle of “what if”.