Futurestates (2010– )
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Refuge 

Sonia, a young Iranian journalism student and social activist, has recently fled to the US in hopes of an education and a better life. But when an escalating cyber-conflict between the US ... See full summary »
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Cast

Episode credited cast:
Tasi Alabastro Tasi Alabastro ... Security Guard
Nikohl Boosheri ... Sonia
Camyar Chai Camyar Chai ... Reza
Thomas Cokenias ... Council Member Torres
Nick Corvello Nick Corvello ... Security Guard
Barbara Flores Barbara Flores ... Solider
Connie Fogarty Connie Fogarty ... Council Member Watney
Phil Frost Phil Frost ... Scientist
Maxwell Ghobadi ... Iranian Man
Richard Goeb Richard Goeb ... Newscaster
Jan Haley ... Receptionist
Jeremy Harari Jeremy Harari ... Teenager on Bus
Orion Huang Orion Huang ... Others
Nafis Khani Nafis Khani ... Nina
Larry Kitagawa ... Council Member Haraguchi (as Lawrence Kitagawa)
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Storyline

Sonia, a young Iranian journalism student and social activist, has recently fled to the US in hopes of an education and a better life. But when an escalating cyber-conflict between the US and Iran puts her at risk of deportation, her only way of staying may come at a greater price than she's willing to pay. Written by Refuge

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Genres:

Sci-Fi

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

1 May 2013 (USA) See more »

Filming Locations:

San Jose, California, USA

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Box Office

Budget:

$50,000 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Color:

Color
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User Reviews

Refuge: Pacing is a bit off, but the ideas are well presented
2 June 2019 | by bob the mooSee all my reviews

A young Iranian woman living as a refugee in the US finds herself caught up in political machinations between the US and Iran whenever cyberattacks bring the two countries into a tension. While facing uncertain future, she is offered the chance to do some work which will open her to fast-tracking for a Green Card, and a life in the US.

I saw a write-up for this recently that made a lot of the current US/Iranian tensions, drawing a line from this film to this time. I don't think the film does too much with this backdrop though, other than have it as a backdrop. Instead what it does is structure a narrative around the idea of the disenfranchised being open to abuse due to their inherent lack of power and voice. In the film this manifests itself two ways, neither being "unreasonable" if you really wanted to explain them away - but yet through the experience of Sonia we can see clearly these are not reasonable. Having her life risked because of a conflict way above her influence, and then her best option being a terrible option - both speak to how poor her situation is. It is also telling that she looks around her neighbours in low-cost housing, and sees something she desires in terms of what it represents.

The film runs too long for what it does though, and the pacing is off. It looks and sounds good, with good use of location, and unobtrusive and unshowy use of effects to put us in the near future. The lead actress is the key to it working, and she does well, even if not all elements of it come together as a whole.


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