The Confusion of Tongues

Created by Hendrik Harms, The Pitch 2020

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The Confusion of Tongues is set after the First Galactic War and the unstoppable Powlen plague, when a group of races come together to form The Consortium, ushering in an era of peace under the banner of Nu-Mocracy. To aid this new prosperity, The Consortium develops Dot, a little white machine that sits on your temple. Dot is like a futuristic siri, able to plot courses and universally translate. Her role is to extrapolate information. Our story starts as pilot Dendra’So transports Castolian delegate, Tora Quarn, to the newly built Babel Station for a summit to discuss a growing refugee crisis on the Tullen homeworlds. There, they are greeted by the overseer of the station, the Concierge, himself a Tullen. After the other delegates arrive and the summit begins, the Concierge asks Dot a pointed question, which causes her to disable the language matrix and plunges the summit into chaos. As communication is lost, violence breaks out and motivations become clear. Dendra’So must navigate the dangerous station to locate Tora and get her back to the shuttle, all whilst battling the burning prospect - is peace so fragile and can an empire really be brought down by a single question?

Biblical Connection

The Confusion of Tongues is based on Genesis 11:1 through 9, more commonly known as The Tower of Babel. What we want to achieve with this film is to take the themes of the original story, which explores hubristic actions that lead to cultural and linguistic homogeneity, and infuse modern socio and economical issues. Weaving through an over-arching theme - our reliance on technology. I felt the best way to showcase this was to set our story firmly in the science fiction genre. It would be easy to use a villainous AI in this type of idea, but we wanted to avoid that trope, which is why we've made Dot more like a futuristic Siri. She has no motivations, she only extrapolates the information that she is given. So, when she deems the summit as a threat to Nu-Mocracy, her only solution is to disable the language matrix that allows for universal translation. Due to always having Dot, none of the delegates I think there are a lot of relevant themes within this story that parallels the type of world we live in at the moment and I would love to explore them in this heightened environment.