A while back we learned that there was going to be a short film based on the dystopian political drama, Papers, Please. The game is set in a fictional Eastern European country called Arstotzka, which has just started recovering from war and has taken extreme measures to vet immigrants coming into the country. Check out the final film below.
The short film explores the high-tension atmosphere in the Bloc-like setting of Lucas Pope's Papers, Please universe, where we follow a border immigration officer in his less than ideal routine of checking the papers of presumably innocent but sometimes dangerous individuals. The short was published over on the YouTube channel for Nikita Ordynskiy, but you can also watch through the Steam client.
After introducing the premise of the Grestin border check following a brief explanation of Arstotzka's six-year war, we then get a look at the border patrol officer setting up his office. Shortly thereafter we get a brief introduction of an officer who asks for a favor from the inspection officer to let through someone named Elisa.
We then get a series of vignettes of various individuals, some of whom are granted access into the country and others who are denied... well, many are denied.
There's a moment of truth where Elisa arrives and mentions that she's there for Sergiu... the officer who asked for the favor. However, things don't quite go as you might have been expecting.
There are several moments of high tension and completely unexpected outcomes, similar to what happens in the game, Papers, Please.
The short film ends in an explosive way that leaves you begging for more. And to be short film Igor Savochkin puts in a worthwhile performance of a world-weary inspector trying to carefully edge his way through a job with seemingly impossible emotional ramifications.
It's a shame because the near 11-minute short leaves you begging for more Papers, Please. It's a prime example of how a video game movie should be done and done right. Lucas Pope's world is very, very realized and it brings some of the real-life horrors of Soviet-era communism to life in startling and real ways.
Either way, the short film has gained huge universal appraise over on Steam and gamers and non-gamers alike seem to be captivated by Ordynskiy's project.
It's free to view and you will need subtitles since they speak in Russian, but it's well worth a watch if you have a bit of time to spare.