Hyper Realism has always been regarded as absurd, it’s impossible for a picture to be more realistic than reality, we often times see this trope being used by amateur writers for a cheap way to create atmosphere, a picture appearing on screen crying “hyper realistic” blood is a perfect example of this.
But that is not what hyper realism is about, hyper realism consists on a form of photography that is impossible to achieve, a picture so real you can actually touch what’s inside and feel it, it’s like a single moment frozen in time and put on a wall for people to admire.
I actually worked with a company (that shall remain nameless) as an engineer, we were working on hyper realistic technology, a brand of televisions and cameras that could display hyper realistic images, movies etc.
We had recently discovered an advanced nano-sensor system that allowed crystallization and replication of various textures, so we could recreate the feeling of touching water for example and we didn’t actually have to put water on the screen to make it work.
After the first prototypes were finished, we tested them to see if everything was in check, at first we tried with normal pictures and it worked like a charm, but then it was time to move on to something a little bit more advanced, moving pictures.
We hired a small amount of professional movie makers to record different 5 minute scenes in which the technology would be pushed to its limit; we had a war simulation, a nautical simulation, a Siberian forest simulation, a storm simulation and a horror simulation.
Each simulation would be shown in different testing rooms for maximum effect, the first one to be shown was the war simulation.
The war simulation movie displayed a combat scenario in Iraq, it took place on a small bazar and we could see a small soldier squad hiding behind some boxes, the soldiers were talking to each other about an enemy ambush taking place.
On the rooftops there were many talisman troops shooting down at them with heavy machine guns, one of them tried throwing a grenade at the squad of soldiers but was immediately shot in the head by a marksman, the others started retreating when they saw this.
The simulation went wonderfully, we could touch the sand and feel the little grains in the tips of our fingers, the explosion emitted heat and if you got hit by a bullet you would feel a sting on your hand.
Then was time to test the nautical simulator, it took place inside of a pirate ship on the west indies in the 18th century, a little cliché but we we’re testing a product, not reviewing a movie.
The film was just five minutes of the ship’s crews talking and laughing, there were crewman playing cards on the deck, drinking rum, repairing the ship etc. but the captain was nowhere to be found.
When testing this one, we touched the water, it was a success, our fingers got a little bit wet, the texture was doing perfectly.
After this, we tested the Siberian simulation movie, it was nothing but a still shot of a forest while it snowed so we didn’t have much ground to test, however we could feel the cold and the snowflakes falling on our hands, test number 3 was a success.
We moved to test number 4, the storm simulator, the same guy who made the Siberian simulation made this one, so it was just raining in the forest, I know this will sound unprofessional but at the time I thought the guy had some sort of forest fetish .
As it was raining, we didn’t have to check if the water effect was ok, we had to test the wind to see if it worked, we were surprised to find out it worked perfectly, everything was going according to plan or even better.
Finally we went to the last simulation room, the horror simulation , the film opened with a still shot of a dark basement, after 2 minutes a light bulb turned on revealing a woman with contorted legs crawling towards the screen, her face was hidden by her hair and she was covered in bruises, this sure gave as a scare.
She was crawling slowly towards us moaning In pain, she looked directly at us and pleaded for help.
When she got close to the screen, she revealed her face, it was badly cut and bruised with tears streaming down, she coughed and tons of blood came out, and when I say came out, I meant it literally came out of the screen, we had seen display of particle effects on the other screens but this one was by far the most impressive one.
The Woman then looked down and died of what I think was blood loss, we went to touch the blood inside the screen, the thick texture was done perfectly and most surprising of all, when we looked at our fingers they really were blood stained.
Silence fell upon the room, we understood how we could have our fingers wet from touching the texture, but stained? Something was not right…
We began to try and touch the woman, and that’s when to our horror we found out that… there was no screen…