By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood December 4, 2012 at 3:59PM
DOCUMENTARY SHORT FILMS
30% (Women and Politics in Sierra Leone) / United Kingdom, Sierra Leone (Director: Anna Cady) — Oil-painted animation brings to life the stories of three powerful women in postconflict Sierra Leone, revealing the violence and corruption women face as they fight for fairer representation in the governance of their country.
The Battle of amfAR / U.S.A. (Directors: Rob Epstein, Jeffrey Friedman, Screenwriter: Sharon Wood) — When AIDS strikes, two very different women – Hollywood icon Elizabeth Taylor and research scientist Dr. Mathilde Krim – join forces to create America’s first AIDS research foundation. The fight against HIV/AIDS has never been the same.
Catnip: Egress to Oblivion? / U.S.A.(Director: Jason Willis) — Catnip is all the rage with today's modern feline, but do we really understand it? This film frankly discusses the facts about this controversial substance.
Endless Day / Germany (Director: Anna Frances Ewert) — For most people, sleep comes naturally, but for others, the night turns into an ongoing struggle to drift off into oblivion. This film explores what it’s like to be awake involuntarily and the feelings that accompany the passing of sleepless time.
Fall to Grace / U.S.A. (Director: Alexandra Pelosi) — Former New Jersey governor Jim McGreevey famously resigned from office after declaring himself “a gay American.” Since then, he has continued to use his connections to help rehabilitate women and to make peace with his journey from married governor to gay suburban priest.
Irish Folk Furniture / Ireland (Director: Tony Donoghue) — In Ireland, old hand-painted furniture is often associated with hard times, with poverty, and with a time many would rather forget. In this animated documentary, 16 pieces of traditional folk furniture are repaired and returned home.
Outlawed in Pakistan / Pakistan, U.S.A. (Directors: Habiba Nosheen, Hilke Schellmann) — Kainat Soomro, a Pakistani teenager, accuses four men from her village of gang-raping her. She takes her case to the Pakistani courts and faces a deeply flawed criminal-justice system.
Paraíso / U.S.A. (Director: Nadav Kurtz) — Three immigrant window cleaners risk their lives every day rappelling down some of Chicago's tallest skyscrapers. Paraíso reveals the danger of their job and what they see on the way down.
The Roper / U.S.A. (Director: Ewan McNicol) — A black man with hip-hop and zydeco roots hard grafts through the local, all-white rodeo circuits in the Deep South, as he dreams of competing in the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas.
The Secret of Trees / U.S.A. (Director: Albert Maysles) — What do trees know that we don't? Thirteen-year-old inventor Aidan has discovered that trees use a mathematical formula to gather sunlight in crowded forests. Now he wonders why we don’t collect solar energy in the same way.
Skinningrove / U.S.A. (Director: Michael Almereyda) — Photographer Chris Killip shares unpublished images chronicling time spent among the fiercely independent residents of a remote English fishing village.
A Story for the Modlins / Spain (Director: Sergio Oksman, Screenwriter: Sergio Oksman) —The tale of Elmer Modlin, who, after appearing in Rosemary’s Baby, fled with his family to a far-off country and shut himself away in a dark apartment for 30 years.
When the Zombies come / U.S.A. (Director: Jon Hurst) — At a remote hardware store, fans of the walking dead have turned their love of zombies into an obsession, warping the way they see the store and its customers.
The Whistle / Poland (Director: Grzegorz Zariczny) — Marcin, a lowest-leagues football referee who lives in a small town near Krakow, dreams of better times. At his mother’s urging, he decides to change his life and find himself a girlfriend and a better job.
You Don't Know Jack / U.S.A. (Director: Morgan Spurlock) — Jack Andraka, a high school sophomore, has developed a revolutionary new test for pancreatic cancer, proving the future of science is in the hands of our youth.
ANIMATED SHORT FILMS
Benjamin's Flowers / Sweden (Director and screenwriter: Malin Erixon) — Lovelorn and lonely Benjamin lives on the blurry borderline between fantasy and reality.
Bite of the Tail / South Korea, U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Song E Kim) — Life is a constant struggle for a husband and wife. She is suffering from stomach pain, and the doctor has no clue about a cure. Meanwhile, her husband is on his own journey of hunting a snake.
The Event / U.S.A., United Kingdom (Director: Julia Pott, Screenwriter: Tom Chivers) — Love and a severed foot at the end of the world.
Feral / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Daniel Sousa) — A solitary hunter finds a wild boy in the woods and brings him back to civilization. Alienated by his strange new environment, the boy tries to adapt by using the same strategies that kept him safe in the forest.
In Hanford / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Chris Mars) — This heartbreaking true story of a town poisoned by Cold War–era nuclear-arms manufacture is told through firsthand accounts and fantasy scenes, which empathize with the victim’s plight.
Marcel, King of Tervuren / U.S.A. (Director: Tom Schroeder, Screenwriter: Ann Berckmoes) — In this Greek tragedy – as acted out by Belgian roosters – Marcel survives the bird flu, alcohol, sleeping pills and his son, Max.
Oh Willy... / Belgium, France, Netherlands (Directors and screenwriters: Marc James Roels, Emma De Swaef) — Willy returns to his naturalist roots as he bungles his way into noble savagery.
Seraph / U.S.A. (Director: Dash Shaw, Screenwriters: John Cameron Mitchell, Dash Shaw) — A boy’s childhood scars his life.
Thank You / U.S.A. (Directors: Pendleton Ward, Tom Herpich, Screenwriters: Pendleton Ward, Tom Herpich) — A pack of fire wolves attack a snow golem in the forest and accidentally leave a cub behind after their retreat. The golem's life is thrown into chaos as he attempts to reunite the cub with its family.
Tram / France, Czech Republic (Director and screenwriter: Michaela Pavlátová) — The humdrum daily routine of a tram conductress is jolted when the vibrations and rhythm of the road turn her on and take her on an erotic and surrealistic fantasy journey.
NEW FRONTIER SHORT FILMS
An electrifying celebration of innovation in filmmaking, these New Frontier shorts energize the mind through bold aesthetics and thought-provoking content.
The Capsule / Greece (Director: Athina Rachel Tsangari, Screenwriters: Athina Rachel Tsangari, Aleksandra Waliszewska) — Seven young women. A mansion perched on a Cycladic rock. A series of lessons on discipline, desire, discovery, and disappearance. A melancholy, inescapable cycle on the brink of womanhood – infinitely.
Century / U.S.A. (Director: Kevin Jerome Everson) — Filmed in Charlottesville, Virginia, and starring a General Motors automobile – the titular brown Buick Century – meeting its fate.
Datamosh / U.S.A. (Director: Yung Jake) — A contemporary rap video that explores the glitchy video art trend "datamoshing". All geeked up, Yung Jake glitches out your computer and celebrates nerdiness and getting money.
Iyeza / South Africa (Director and screenwriter: Kudzanai Chiurai) — An allegory of the Last Supper depicting the establishment of a new nation-state, Kudzanai Chiurai's Iyeza explores the African condition by juxtaposing the past and the present of a continent in the grip of violent civil wars.
Primate Cinema: Apes As Family / Scotland, U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Rachel Mayeri) — Chimpanzees, our closest relatives, like to watch television. What would a film made expressly for chimps look like? Created with a primatologist and actors in chimp suits, a primate drama is presented to chimpanzees at the Edinburgh Zoo.
Reindeer / United Kingdom (Director: Eva Weber) — A lyrical and haunting portrait of reindeer herding in the twilight expanses of the Lapland wilderness.
Sirocco / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Hisham Bizri) — A detective is sent to the desert to investigate a murder only to find out he’s been investigating his own death.
Until the Quiet Comes / U.S.A. (Director and screenwriter: Kahlil Joseph) — Shot in the Nickerson Gardens housing projects in Watts, Los Angeles, this film deals with themes of violence, camaraderie and spirituality through the lens of magical realism.