BSFF 2021 winners

This year we had 81 entries to our film festival across both the science fact and fiction categories. Our team of student volunteers watched and commented on these and then Robbie and Katherine (the BSFF Directors) chose just 31 for our official selection.

If your film was selected, a massive well done! It was an incredibly tough competition! The 31 films were passed to our teams of judges or to the University of Bristol research institutes that kindly supported additional prizes this year.

You can learn a little more about the BSFF judges in our previous blog posts:
Science Fact judges
Science Fiction judges

The institutes and judges watched the official selection and scored them. The scores were averaged to decide the winners. Read on to find out who won!

Elizabeth Blackwell Institute health film prize

The University of Bristol-based Institute awarded the prize to health-related films in celebration of the 200th anniversary of Elizabeth Blackwell’s birth.

Bristol-born Elizabeth Blackwell was a pioneering figure in medical sciences: she was both the first woman to receive a medical degree in the US and the first woman added to the British General Medical Council’s register.

Runner up — Gene Therapy Explained: Changing Our Bodies’ Recipe to Treat Disease

Linda von Neree, Katie Snell
The animation shows Alexis and Freddie, two members of the Young Persons’ Advisory Group (YPAG) at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, asking questions to understand what gene therapy is about. All members of the group were involved in shaping the animation and they regularly work with doctors, nurses and scientists helping to improve health care research for children.

Watch it again here.

Winner — Hand

Brett Harvey
A reflective essay on living with young onset Parkinson’s disease.

Watch it again here.

Jean Golding Institute data science and AI film prize

The University of Bristol-based Institute is a multidisciplinary hub, an environment where novel data science and data-intensive research is explored to find data driven solutions to societal challenges. The JGI connects, communicates, and facilitates interdisciplinary exchange, promoting a spirit of collaboration, working with communities to enhance research impact, expand networks and develop partnerships.

Runner up — Not a Robot

George Summers
A robot tries to break into a human facility, and is asked a security question…

Watch the trailer here.

Winner — The Artificial Revolution

Elyas Masrour
A young artist investigates the recent advancements in creative Artificial Intelligence to see if we’re approaching the end of art.

Watch it again here.

Cabot Institute for the Environment film prize

The University of Bristol-based Institute supports evidence-based and interdisciplinary solutions to environmental challenges. The Institute makes use of an academic network of 600 that collaborate to improve the way we live now and tackle the negative impacts we have on our surroundings.

Runner up — Beavers: Nature’s Ecosystem Engineers

Lauren Cook
Beavers is a watercolour-illustrated stop-motion animation about beavers, their keystone impacts and role in restoring UK rivers.

Watch it again here.

Winner — Lucho Apa and the Soil

Clau Zavala
Lucho Apa, the only ‘chulengo’ (a young guanaco) in his herd, must venture through the Choapa valleys in Chile to form his own. Along the way, he will get to know northern landscapes, form solid friendships and discover that soil is not just dirt!

Watch the full miniseries here.

Science Fact Amateur

Runner up — Beavers: Nature’s Ecosystem Engineers

Lauren Cook
See above for more details on Lauren’s film. 

Winner — The Artificial Revolution

Elyas Masrour
See above for more details on Elyas’ film. 

Science Fact Professional

Joint winners —


Brett Harvey
See above for more details on Brett’s film.

Lucho Apa and the Soil

Clau Zavala
See above for more details on Clau’s film.

Science Fiction Amateur

Runner up — Out of the Bag: Revisiting the Moreau Subjects

Andrew Essig
It’s been twenty years since the notorious Moreau organisation went public. Now, Simulacrum’s own Gemma Eversman has landed the first ever interview with a key member from the company. Is there any merit to the rumors? Has the tech giant overstepped its bounds? Or are the limits of science meant to be pushed?

Winner — Not a Robot

George Summers 
See above for more details on George’s film.

Science Fiction Professional

Runner up — Diving Bell

Kyle Brewis, Josh Klaassen
While researching a large valley lake, a man encounters something unexpected.

Winner — Lifelike

Keith Allott
A reclusive sci-fi enthusiast develops an unexpected friendship with a customer service representative.

Congratulations everyone!!!

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