When George Orwell's dystopian vision of future Britain, 1984, was published in 1949 the idea of universal surveillance was considered either paranoia, or something restricted to communist or fascist regimes. By the time 1984 rolled around, it was becoming more of a technological reality, as demonstrated in Max Headroom and other dystopian films.

Now we are into the second decade of the 21st century and, ironically, continuous surveillance is more of a reality in so-called democratic countries than it is under many of the dictatorships, although admittedly more benign. Orwell's vision of the future may not be as bleak as he painted it, but it is no less accurate.

Orwell did write about citizen surveillance, especially by children, and although he didn't foresee the development of camera phones and social networks, he also didn't anticipate that we would be so stupid as to spy on ourselves.

The government doesn't need to invest in and maintain CCTV cameras any more because most of us are busy advertising our whereabouts on Twitter, Facebook, FourSquare etc.

It seems that more criminal activity has been caught by members of the public than by the tens of thousands of CCTV cameras, or at least those activities involving the police, where the cameras conveniently weren't working.

The camera may not lie, but what it sees is open to interpretation (as shown in the brilliant ad for The Guardian), or it's simply looking the other way. These are some of the themes that are addressed in EYEBORGS.

If you missed the world premiere of the film at SFL8, here's a brief synopsis: In the wake of a terrorist attack the US government passes the Freedom of Observation Act, giving them the right to access and monitor all surveillance cameras using the Optical Defence Intelligence Network.

The system also employs the Eyeborgs - mobile, robotic cameras – that begin to act on their own volition. Because the police have become so reliant on them, they believe everything they see, but when a series of unexplained deaths happen, lead investigator "Gunner" Reynolds (Adrian Paul) is not convinced that the cameras don't lie.

He makes a shocking discovery when he goes to stop an assassination attempt on the President.

EYEBORGS is a film that is big on ideas and action, but small on budget and convincing screenplay. Anyone who has tried to make a low-budget movie will tell you, you have to tailor your screenplay to what you have available to you within the constraints of your budget.

EYEBORGS is a great example of this and it is borne out in the DVD's behind-the-scenes features by writer-director-producer-actor Richard Clabaugh, who reveals that he had access to a great stunt team so they included lots of stunts; robots are quicker and easier to create and animate in CGI; and star Adrian Paul was willing and available to play the lead.

This film has everything you expect from a straight-to-DVD title: patchy acting, Danny Trejo, clichéd dialogue and lots of sub Bay explosions. It has the paradoxical distinction of being dumb and thought provoking at the same time.

EYEBORGS is out now and available from Play and all good retailers.

We have three copies of the film to give away on DVD. To enter the competition, click on the link below.

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