The Oculus Creators Lab delivers yet another offering of socially conscious VR films that will leave you thinking.
Since its initial launch three years ago, Oculus VR for Good’s Creators Lab program has teamed up with independent filmmakers from around the world to produce over a dozen high-grade VR films covering a wide-range of social issues through immersive storytelling. So far, the initiative has managed to pair an impressive 28 creative filmmakers with 26 nonprofit organizations, including Primates Inc., the Malala Fund, and the GO Campaign.
According to an official Oculus release, three projects in particular, Meeting a Monster, Authentically Us: We’re Still Here and Authentically Us: She Flies By Her Own Wings, have officially launched on Oculus Video and are now available for download via the Oculus Store. Take a look at this latest offering of socially conscious 360-degree films:
Created by filmmaker Gabriela Arp, Meeting a Monster is an intense recreation of the events following former white supremacist Angela King’s indoctrination into the white power movement. A harrowing examination into ethnic hatred, the film shows the viewers Angel’s eye-opening journey of self-discovery, from her eight years of blind hatred within white supremacist groups, to her eventual recovery.
I had the pleasure of experiencing this project myself at this years Tribeca Film Festival in NYC, and it was without doubt one of the more impactful experiences at the festivals Virtual Arcade. Well-choreographed cinematography and a strong performance from the films cast came together for a truly emotional experience that continued running through my head for days.
Released as part one of the Authentically Us trilogy, a three-part VR docuseries covering the issues of the American Northwest LGBTQ community, We’re Still Here explores the relationship between gender identity within traditional tribal cultures of the First Nations.
A Two-Spirit artist (a cultural term explaining the fluidity of gender identity and sexuality with respect to the traditional tribal roles of the First Nations) and historian in Boise, Idaho, Aiden Crawford hopes to continue his work passing down the wisdom of his elders, while simultaneously raising awareness of the “binary understandings of gender.”
SHE FLIES BY HER OWN WINGS (Authentically Us series)
Part two of the Authentically Us trilogy, She Flies By Her Own Wings takes a deep look into the often untalked about issues afflicting transgender military personnel. The powerful immersive film follows Shannon Scott, an outspoken transgender advocate and veteran of the United States Armed Forces as she works to educate others on the complexities of this unique experience.
Having spoken at numerous pro-transgender events and lobbied in Washington DC for transgender equality inside the military, Scott has been a fearless champion for all gender rights, both home and abroad.
She Flies By Her Own Wings, which premiered at this years Tribeca Film Festival, was another project I had the honor of experiencing for myself. Watching Scott fearlessly address large audiences with such passion gave me goosebumps throughout this eye-opening film.
These three VR films join fellow Creators Lab projects Step to the Line and Out of the Blue, already available via the Oculus Store. Meeting a Monster, Authentically Us: We’re Still Here and Authentically Us: She Flies By Her Own Wings are available now on the Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, and Gear VR.
Know of a social issue that you deserves some attention? Applications for Creators Lab 3.0 are now open!
Image Credit: Oculus VR for Good’s Creators Lab