First ever Emirati sci-fi film's special effects so unrealistic we made our own to compare!

Published June 15th, 2016 - 08:01 GMT
We challenged the UAE's first ever sci-fi film 'Aerials' by creating better special effects than theirs. (
We challenged the UAE's first ever sci-fi film 'Aerials' by creating better special effects than theirs. (

We were super excited to hear that the UAE has made its first ever Emirati science fiction film this year.

Yes, Dubai is about to have a whole lot of flying saucers in its sky, because the "aliens are coming" to our cinemas in "Aerials."

This isn't an alien invasion film per se, but "follows a couple who wake up one day to find that aliens have shut down the city of Dubai. Power is cut off and cars stop working. As the city is thrown into chaos, the couple, stuck at home, confront the new reality around them," writes Gulf News. 

“The aliens don’t attack or destroy the city. Their presence just brings about massive changes,” said "Aerials'" filmmaker S.A. Zaidi.

Zaidi said that “You keep seeing it in Hollywood films. That scene of the spaceship over New York or Los Angeles or London. People are bored of it. I have always wanted to give people a new visual perspective, a new iconic image.”

“There are so many stories to be told from this part of the world. And the science fiction genre is so new there’s a lot of things to be explored,” he said.

After watching the film's trailer, we were utterly disappointed with how unrealistic the spaceships and visual effects looked. Yes, it was a low-budget movie, but we expected more from Zaidi and his special effects team.

Zaidi and Emirati producer Ganem Ghubas might have spent a good amount of time on creating special effects for the 90-minute film, but our video editor at Albawaba, Rami Khoury, spent just one hour creating similar scenes using After Effects, to prove that their effects could and should have been much better.

These are the alien "invasion" scenes in the 32-year-old's upcoming film:

“We used Red Dragon cameras. The same kind that were used in the Hobbit films. And Leica Summilux-C lenses, which were used inX-Men: Days of Future Past and Dawn of the Planet of the Apes. I also used a lot of my own personal equipment to help bring down the cost,” Zaidi said.

And these are ours:

With that being said, we appreciate Zaidi's massive efforts in making his sci-fi horror film dream come true. 

Zaidi said that a lot of people involved with the film, including the actors, agreed to work for little pay. “People have been so good and supportive of the project and it’s only because of them that this has taken shape.”

UAE-born Zaidi is of Pakistani origin and made his film debut with the 2013 short film "The Sons of Two Suns."

After three years in the making, Dubai-shot, UAE-produced "Aerials" will exclusively open at Vox Cinemas in Mall of the Emirates Dubai, Fujairah City Centre and Yas Mall, Abu Dhabi this weekend.

“They (Vox Cinemas) have been so supportive of small films and directors, which is really encouraging,” said Zaidi.

By Arwad Khalifeh

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