Rakka is a science fiction short film from director Neil Blomkamp. After being propelled to fame by District 9, Blomkamp went on to make Elysium, a less well-received and overtly preachy movie that has rightly drawn the ire of White Nationalists; both Gregory Hood and Kevin MacDonald have ably covered its breathtakingly arrogant subtext and narrative shortcomings. Following up Elysium with the poorly reviewed Chappie, a multiculturalist movie about rappers and a police robot, Blomkamp has departed from Big Screen ambitions to focus on smaller-scale, independent productions under the branding of “Oats Studios.” The tropes demonstrated in “Oats” helped him secure work with Netflix, pushing much the same implicitly anti-white ideology.
Rakka is Oats Studios’ flagship offering. Oats: Volume 1 is divided up into three “serious Oats” films: Rakka, Firebase, and Zygote, all of which are shorts utilizing Blomkamp’s motif of high-tech body horror. The rest of the volume consists of either computer-generated demonstrations of assets or gallows-humor comedy sketches, or some mix of the two. As shown by the vaporwave mock infomercial Cooking with Bill, Blomkamp is in tune with the aesthetics of our time, if not its ideological undercurrents. Elysium was astonishingly ham-fisted in its attempt to cajole whites into accepting replacement by criminalistic Third-Worlders, with Matt Damon martyring himself for Latinx prostitutes clamoring for free healthcare. The frosty, power-suited Delacourt (a metaphorical power suit, rather than the literal exoskeletal armor of the mercenary she employs) implemented the border policy that we all wish Trump had the will to emulate: defending the border with lethal force, and when this fails, utilizing catch and mass deportation.
Elysium is a bundle of contradictions. It implies that whites who want to escape Earth to build their own society are morally despicable, but also that the trashy, broken societies of the Third World are that way because they are made up of impulsive and violent people (the “hero” is a former car thief). In Elysium‘s “happy” ending, mechanical medical teams fly to Earth to service dindus and MS13 gang members around the globe. It realistically amounts to giving the presently-living members of the goblin races a shot in the arm of free healthcare, before inevitable vandalism and general decay leave the medpods and droids destroyed. What could be more Elysian than communal bike sharing? Yet whenever these schemes are tried by idealistic, wealthy cosmopolitans, operators are routinely forced out of business by non-white vandalism. Are we really supposed to pretend Elysium won’t just become a crime-ridden orbital favela?
Gregory Hood raises a question unmentioned in the film: If the medical care the plot hinges on were able to be abundantly produced at low cost, why would the Elysians jealously guard it from those stuck on the surface? Furthermore, what’s stopping the Third Worlders Matt Damon dies for from simply producing it themselves? Are they incapable? Or are they not interested in forming an advanced society and taking up the civic duty (and basic non-criminality) it requires? If so, why is opening the borders to them such an urgent moral necessity?
No matter how much Elysium implies the White Man is a heinous villain for resisting the replacement of America with Amexica, it’s hard to get enthusiastic about Blomkamp’s self-exterminating, “ultra-cuck” ideology. The film boils down to two mechanically enhanced white men in gladiatorial combat, thus validating the idea that only whites (or those who manipulate whites through subversion) have agency. And running away to space is a form of sentimental and passive resistance, one as embarrassing as Trump’s comments that he “wouldn’t want” the border defended with machine-guns. If other races are prepared to kill for territory on Mother Earth, then we have to be as well, otherwise all negotiations with other groups are overtures to an unconditional surrender. After all:
. . . in the circumstances of group competition which this globe entertains, all groups are partly in competition for scarce resources against all other groups. It doesn’t have to be as merciless as all that. But it is real, and it is extant, and it is ongoing.
Whenever White Nationalists refer to the materialist, expansionist pipe dream of “exploring the galaxy” as some eventual, pseudo-religious historical destiny, the editor in me wants to strike that pie-in-the-sky idea from their otherwise credible and authentic work. We don’t need to explore space to find habitable planets. We are already currently living on one, and are struggling to resist our dispossession on it. It is better to assert ourselves today and worry about the morality of mass deportations later, than to allow ourselves to be overtaken by wishful thinking about living on space platforms.
Rakka, in contrast to Elysium, features alien invaders and colonists instead of masculine White Men as the villains. These aliens are hideous lizards with powerful laser cannons, disgusting solid-slime architecture and spaceships, and a mania for the extermination of humanity. It’s all very gritty and millennial, making excellent use of Blomkamp’s trademark cyborgization body horror, handycam directing, and knack for involving action sequences. A weary Sigourney Weaver (who was 67 when Rakka was released) returns to an alien-fighting role as a resistance leader, commanding United States Army squaddies and negotiating with shady bomb suppliers – given that Weaver is the only believable choice for a female leader. Aside from devastatingly powerful technology, the aliens are able to hypnotize hapless goys by making eye contact (but perhaps the tribe can’t pull this trick off with quite so much ease, and have to rely instead on the broadcast media, like the Reaganite alien colonizers in They Live), a neat feature which means that resistance members have to wear “mind-lock” helmets to prevent themselves from being bamboozled.
Taken altogether, the dynamic action, claustrophobia, and seamless use of computer-generated nastiness in Rakka makes it a more compelling alien occupation offering than the charmless, unimaginative invaders featured in the Tom Cruise vehicles Oblivion, Edge of Tomorrow, and War of the Worlds. That said, Blomkamp just can’t help himself but to virtue-signal. He offers archetypes that are both questionable and useful, and to which White Nationalists (or Preservationists, if we are preserving a white humanity from being subsumed by reptile invaders) would do well to pay attention.
Rakka‘s short, twenty-two-minute runtime is divided into two movie-pitch segments: an overview of the setting and its two principal characters, Amir and Nosh. Both characters are offensive racial stereotypes played wincingly straight. Rakka is presented as serious throughout – something that gels with its intended audience of white men with a taste for guns, militarism, and action. Knowing irony only makes an appearance in its final moments as the heavy metal music accompanies piles of computer-generated skulls and green-glowing technology – an aesthetic throwback to shooter games like Doom, Quake, and Unreal Tournament.
The film begins in “Texas, 2020,” featuring a narration of the invasion story so far. “We were once mankind . . . we were humanity. And now we’re no more than pests.” In a brief scene that could rustle some racially hypersensitive jimmies, a lizard is seen whipping a group of mainly white slaves along into an alien structure. I thought only blacks were allowed a monopoly on slavery victimhood!
“They took our history and culture.” Oh, Blomkamp. If only you knew how bad things really were. “They killed us in waves when they first arrived . . .” Cue visually impressive – and to his credit – imaginative floating slime weapons levelling buildings. But Blomkamp can’t help but riff on his disaster story as being analogous to an oppressive (and, in Elysium, an implicitly white-managed) modern world, even indirectly: “[They are] raising the global temperature, causing our cities to flood.” Could this be the hysterical fabrication of Abrupt Climate Change, another burden of guilt to load onto the shoulders of the white audience? To top off this convergence of catastrophes, “They waged war on Earth. They set fire to our forests. It’s already hard to breathe.”
At its most fundamental, dystopian science fiction speculates on a threat and postulates how a group will respond to it, making it the natural home of Left-wing utopianists and Right-wing ideologues. Without an examination of group dynamics, either within the ingroup or between conflicting groups, there’s no dimension of meaningful social critique. In Space Cadet, The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, and Starship Troopers, Robert A. Heinlein used threatening outgroups to emphasize the importance of valor, masculinity, and diplomacy in political self-determination. John Christopher’s The Death of Grass, which describes a starving world suffering from a crop-killing blight (a premise which makes its way into the Christopher Nolan flick Interstellar), follows a man, his family, and other tagalong survivors who eventually resort to killing unarmed innocents to steal their food. The protagonist experiences a gradual transfer of loyalty away from his family to defending the group as a whole as the situation becomes bleaker (thus illustrating that it is the collaborative group of men that precedes the nuclear family, and not the other way around). His mental remit, under the extreme pressure of starvation, is narrowed to those he can trust.
Blomkamp, in his liberal nihilism, uses his dystopian imaginings as propaganda to lopsidedly expand the mental remit of white men to include all of humanity by contrasting them with a bunch of genocidal aliens, even though the abuses of our collective trust by other ethnicities are innumerable and insurmountable. It’s a small mercy that the aliens aren’t Nazis, but then the propaganda would be less effective. Having offered White Men little to die for apart from Dindweesha’s healthcare bills or a race of smelly insects, Blomkamp’s Rakka is stuffed full of manly white militants shooting aliens to defend “humanity.” As usual, we aren’t allowed to do anything for ourselves; the only moral actions we can take are in the interests of abstract “humanity” as a whole – a race we only belong to in the movie theater, being excluded from safe spaces and deprived of our civil rights in all other regards.
Obviously, I am expecting too much from Blomkamp to think he might be a 14/88er who makes propaganda films about the Lizard Menace to awaken White Men. Nevertheless, there is some captivating footage: “They hack into our psyche. Into our minds, paralyzing us, taking control of the cerebrum and the limbic system.” A blonde, blue-eyed girl stares directly into the camera, which then cuts to the lizard hypnotizing her with its ungodly mental powers. In a stupid move for a race on the verge of extinction, the white resistance employs a young woman as a suicide bomber – the plan doesn’t quite work, but she provides enough distraction to blow up some aliens. Blomkamp naturally looks down on the redeeming qualities of combat, as the narrator intones, “I wonder if only sick primordial instinct keeps us marching forward aimlessly. Every rational thought tells us it’s over.” Of course, White Men watching Rakka will only hear this line as an invitation to fight the Gamer Wars harder.
Interestingly, Rakka sends up the Macrons and Merkels of the world in an astonishingly grotesque way: “We are sold a different story by our politicians.” The aliens slice open their skulls to insert a brain-controlling set of electronics, and the resultant cyborg zombie stumbles around preaching, “Do not be afraid!” The aliens have created “a conservatory for us, paradise!” We can do it, Germany! We can get to paradise! Blomkamp admits this is open satire, but of a different target:
I always wanted to do a science fiction invasion piece that had direct parallels with an occupying force in a country, like the Germans in France, or Americans in Iraq. There’s these levels of armed troops that are walking through neighborhoods, and well-built buildings, and local politicians have been turned or manipulated.
In France, at least, the Yellow Vests feel that the police have become an occupying neo-liberal force, and the increasing brutality shown to the Gilets jaunes only supports this conclusion. With the mask slipping completely, given the Jussie Smollett saga and President Trump utterly betraying his base, a disenfranchised white majority turning to militant insurrection appears more likely than ever.
Sigourney Weaver’s character has to negotiate with a deranged pyromaniac, Nosh, in order to acquire more bombs and brain-barrier helmets. The man delights in death, destruction, and all-consuming fire. He hungers for “bait” – sick or suicidal people who can be used to draw the aliens into traps. Nosh, who “can make just about anything out of scavenged junk,” is a cruel caricature of Trump-voting, white American men, right down to his taste for heavy metal and his Slayer jacket.
Amir’s character is equally stereotypical: he a fully African ‘groid, a noble savage archetype with a transhumanist bent. The aliens have experimented on him, leaving him with precognitive abilities. And yet he is mute, beaten, and starving when he is taken in by the resistance; playing into the idea that blacks are eternally victimized objects to be shunted around by other races, yet somehow possess spiritual knowledge unattainable by mechanically-minded whites. The portrayal of the black individual as wiser than whites in a way that has to be “discovered” is the only remotely believable one, as left to their own devices, blacks as a group are self-evidently indolent. It is always left to the White Man to lift the victimized black out of the poverty that has been allegedly induced by colonialism, where he can then flourish and bring the virtue of voodoo vibrancy to stodgy white societies. That Blomkamp is pushing this trope long after its credibility has evaporated is proof that the status quo has no new ideas to offer. Amir is unconvincing in everything except his ability to plead for gibs.
Nosh, however, is more believable, as are the heroic remnants of the US Army hunting down the reptilian invaders. White Men, being rational, resourceful, and capable of large-scale organization and collaboration, are masters of systematic violence. Whites are also capable of being absolutely merciless when there is a consensus that it is both moral and necessary, which is why our enemies channel immense effort into pathologizing the idea of us acting in our own group interests. Sooner than presenting themselves as an immediately visible “other,” racial exterminationists nurtured on a Talmudic belief in their own superiority use crypsis and hypnosis to enact grinding demographic warfare.
Blomkamp’s Rakka is, thankfully, not an explicit mockery of neo-Nazis in von Braun-type spaceships, and is immensely watchable despite its flaws. It can speak to young White Men about resisting occupation – be it aliens from Outer Space, Brussels, or Tel Aviv.