In a few short days, the film industry’s most prestigious event takes center stage. The 93rd Academy Awards will air this Sunday at 8 p.m. (EST) on ABC. We are especially paying attention to the short film nominees in the Animated, Live Action, and Documentary categories.
The nominated shorts highlight an array of topics, from police brutality and immigration to love and friendship. The anxieties, fears, and joys of the human condition are all on display.
You can watch these shorts yourself before the Oscars air on Sunday night. Head to https://shorts.tv/theoscarshorts/ for more information on how to watch these films. More on the individual nominees later.
Catch this Critically-Acclaimed Comedy-Fantasy on April 24
As for us, we are premiering a comedy/fantasy short film that is already drawing rave reviews around the world — literally. On April 24, the itsashort.com platform hosted a free premiere of “West of Wonderland (The Search for The Bastard Explorer)” followed by a Q&A with the cast, starting at 8 PM CST/6 PM PST.
Directed by Alex Rapport and written by Roxy Seven, West of Wonderland centers on two brothers who eventually set out on a quest for a long-lost sister. Along the way, those brothers must embrace the past, let go of what they think they know, and face their inner child.
Since its release earlier this year, West of Wonderland has been receiving all types of love from the festivals. The short has been recognized or selected by notable showcases such as the Paris International Short Festival, London International Monthly Film Festival, Berlin Shorts Award, Beyond The Curve International Film Festival, Royal Wolf Film Awards, Chicago Indie Film Awards, and the San Francisco Indie Short Festival, among many others.
To get your ticket to see the uniquely satisfying West of Wonderland, visit http://itsashort.com/westofwonderland. We look forward to seeing your beautiful faces.
Geeking Out at GeekFest
From May 7-9, GeekFest, the world’s first and largest traveling comic convention film festival, is returning to itsashort.com for its monthly showcase. If you are the type who simply devours Marvel, DC, and Star Wars films, then you’ll want to get a ticket and watch this bad boy online at itsashort.com.
Participants will also get a chance to vote on their favorite films.
Then, get your GeekFest ticket by heading to itsashort.com/geekfest before it’s too late.
These Oscar-Nominated Shorts Run the Gamut
The New York Times noted that this year’s batch of Live Action nominees* offer some sort of sociopolitical commentary – not surprising considering the times we live in.
According to the Times, the live action nominees approached their “sensitive subjects with originality and varying degrees of lightness.”
Live Action Oscar Nominees
“Feeling Through” (Doug Roland): A late-night, New York City encounter on the street becomes a profound connection between a homeless teen and a deafblind man.
“The Letter Room” (Elvira Lind): A corrections officer gets transferred to the letter room where he finds himself enmeshed in a prisoner’s deeply private life.
“The Present” (Farah Nabulsi): On his wedding anniversary, a father and his young daughter set out in the West Bank to buy his wife a gift. On their little shopping trip, they encounter soldiers, segregated roads, and checkpoints.
“Two Distant Strangers” (Travon Free and Martin Desmond Roe): A cartoonist makes repeated attempts to go home to his dog, but is thwarted each time due to a recurring deadly encounter he must relive over and over.
“White Eye” (Tomer Shushan): A man locates his stolen bicycle, which now belongs to someone else. He struggles to hold on to his humanity as he tries to retrieve the bike.
Animated Oscar Nominees
The shorts in the Animated category* “range from playful to fatalistic, but all offer moments of delight and provocation,” says IndieWire.
“Burrow” (Madeline Sharafian): All a young rabbit wants to do is build the burrow of her dreams, only to become embarrassed each time she accidentally digs into a neighbor’s home.
“Genius Loci” (Adrien Merigeau): A young loner sees the urban chaos as this mystical oneness that seems alive, like some sort of guide.
“If Anything Happens I Love You” (Will McCormack and Michael Govier): Chronicling the aftermath of tragedy, two grieving parents must journey through an emotional void as they mourn the loss of a child.
“Opera” (Erick Oh): Our society and history, which is filled with beauty and absurdity.
“Yes-People” (Gísli Darri Halldórsson): One morning a mix of people face an everyday battle in their lives, whether at work, school, or dish-washing. As the day progresses, their relationships are tested as well as their capacity to cope.
Documentary Oscar Nominees
Increasingly, the worlds of journalism and non-fiction film are merging, resulting in an array of powerful documentaries that tackle compelling, real-world subjects that have a far-reaching impact, states this IndieWire report. The 2021 Oscar-nominated documentary shorts are no exception.
The five contenders for Best Documentary Short tackle devastating humanitarian crises, urgent political movements, and deep-rooted social justice causes writes IndieWire’s Jude Dry.
“Hunger Ward” (Skye Fitzgerald): This short documents two female health care workers who fight to stop the spread of starvation and save the lives of hunger-stricken children against the backdrop of a forgotten war.
“Colette” (Anthony Giacchino): This doc follows a former French resistance member who, for the first time in 74 years, travels to Germany to visit the concentration camp where her brother died at the hands of Nazis.
“A Concerto Is a Conversation” (Ben Proudfoot and Kris Bowers): A virtuoso jazz pianist and film composer follows his family’s lineage through his 91-year-old grandfather from Jim Crow Florida to the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
“Do Not Split” (Anders Hammer): This is the story of the 2019 Hong Kong protests, told through the demonstrations by local protesters, that escalate into conflict when highly armed police arrive.
“A Love Song for Latasha” (Sophia Nahli Allison): This doc centers on the shooting death of 15-year-old Latasha Harlins at a South Central Los Angeles convenience store, a tragedy that became a flashpoint for the city’s 1992 riots.
To see these Oscar-nominated shorts, visit https://shorts.tv/theoscarshorts/ for more details.
*Film synopses courtesy of IMDB.com