'Automat' by Lightbox
Automat is a fictional film exploring the human cost of the UK’s non-manufacturing convenience society. The film follows Susie who works at a distribution centre in Dunfermline under the shadow of failed capitalism and the growing spectre of Brexit. She meets Lena, an immigrant worker who walks miles every day, picking products off shelves. The back-breaking work becomes more extreme as manager Kenny increases the pressure to meet seasonal demands. Lena is pushed to the limit, but her spirit remains uncrushed. Gradually Lena helps Susie so that they overcome not just the drudgery of their life and the tyranny of Kenny, but a social system determined to keep them down.
The labour force of a fulfilment centre in the UK is a microcosm of British modern society. These often marginalized labourers are a hotchpotch of British working people and immigrants (from Europe and further afield); and so are their belief and opinions. It is no coincidence that a map of distribution centres in the UK echoes a map of Brexit voters. In spite of all these things, Automat is far from bleak. This story will celebrate the humour and human spirit, warm and conquering that shines through the hardship.
Lab Ky Mo (director-writer) graduated from Central St. Martin’s College of Art in London with a degree in Fine Art, then won the Carl Foreman Screenwriting Fellowship to California, in conjunction with BAFTA. His film “MY DAD THE COMMUNIST” was singled out by the standout short film of in 2009 and picked up by the British Council for international distribution worldwide. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1547907/
Chi Thai (producer) is a Vietnamese refugee and filmmaker. She has been a Cannes Lions finalist three times over for her work in commercials; alumnus of Guiding Lights and listed in Creative England’s Top 50 creative companies. Her films have screened at BAFTA and Academy qualifying festivals all over the world.