This Week's SATURDAY SHORTS: Drama, Drama, and more Drama!
Hello ladies and gentlemen, your pal Muldoon here with this week's selection of short films and as the title suggests, it's full of drama. Comedy, horror, and sci-fi seem to fall more in line with what I will go out of my way to see, so I'm quite the lucky guy getting sent shorts with genres all over the map - I get presented with shorts I never would have set my sights on, yet it's films like the ones you'll see today that remind me to constantly keep my eyes open. That's what I hope you will do - if you typically skip out on the drama, go ahead and give today's selection a shot. Hopefully you'll dig what you see. So let's hop on into the dramatic world of today's SATURDAY SHORTS.
Go grab yourself some popcorn, lock your kids in a closet, kill the lights, relax and check out this little weekly film fest we've got ourselves here:
Let's start this thing off with a rather far out short, a stylistic headscratcher that feels pretty original. "Victor and Simon are two computer programmers sent by their company to fix office systems around the country. Forced to work out of hours, tensions rise as the pair struggle to find a solution to the computer system’s failure. The differences between their lifestyle and work ethics bring events to a head that will change their fractious relationship forever." This was shot in by Luther Bhogal-Jones of Faster Productions.
A LETTER FROM HOME
Next up we have a period short from Brenden Fleming. "During the bitter winter of the Battle of the Bulge, an American GI receives a descriptive, heartfelt letter from his wife. Meanwhile, a German sniper creeps up on him and has him in his sights. Inspired by filmmaker Mark Kirkland's late step father, 1st Lt Omer Dwight "Whit" Whitwell, who served as a combat rifle platoon leader during WWII. "
And in staying with the WWII vibe, we have next up director/writer Paul Brady's tale of a "young girl who during World War II rationed Ireland was sent out by her desperate mother to beg on the harsh cold winter streets of Dublin." If you like what you see, be sure to visit Paul's site HERE or shoot him an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
From director Andy Dodd, we have our next film, a rather dark - stick with you - kind of short. "Amanda's tragic fairytale doesn't end with a 'happy ever after'. A dark tale of loss, that moves along with a cutting pace to reach it's dramatic ending."
Here we have our last film of the day with directors Jake Ross and Jake Dolgy of Pocket Jakes. "An unprecedented window into the world of contemporary online social interaction, showing for the first time the monumental shift in social reality as we disconnect from the real world and live our lives online."
And that's all, folks. I'll see you all next week with something a little more light hearted! If you're new to SATURDAY SHORTS or just feel like revisiting past posts, hit any link below to be transported back in time:
If you have a short and think it belongs here or are on the fence about whether to send it in, please do send it in - I'd love to see what you've put together. I've already seen hundreds of fresh new filmmakers' shorts and like any good addict, I need more!
Shoot me an email at "Mike@aintitcool.com"
In the subject line include:
“SHORTS” + “Your film’s name” + “The film’s genre”
Then, in the body of the email, please include a synopsis of the film and any contact information you might think I need or would want published.
Please don’t feel the need to submit multiple times. I swear to each of you I truly check every email I get, and sending the same short a few times just makes it a bit messier.
Remember, the filmmakers might still be in the audience, so feel free to share your thoughts in Talkbacks below. (JUST DON'T BE AN ASSHOLE). I picked them, so you know I think highly of all of these, but how about you fine folks? How'd you like 'em?
- Mike McCutchen
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Nov. 17, 2012, 4:29 p.m. CST
I really enjoyed ONLINE NOW and A LETTER FROM HOME. LULLABY has an interesting premise, but felt just too short to me. I think it has promise if it were fleshed out a bit. It was barely two and a half minutes long. THE CRUNCH is definitely shot in a unique style, but not really my cup of tea. I'll come back later and give it a watch though. I don't have time at the moment to view JANEY MARY. So I can't rate that one just yet.
Nov. 17, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST
Nov. 17, 2012, 7:29 p.m. CST
by Bill C.
'Lullaby' got its point across, but I think lv_426 is right: it could have used another minute or so to just flesh things out a little more. And 'Online Now' was actually more depressing than 'Lullaby,' IMO, albeit in a markedly different way.
Nov. 17, 2012, 8:09 p.m. CST
jump infront of the train, then steps back because she got all kinds of attention from social media was kind of disturbing to me. We won't need oppressive omnipotent machines to trap us in the matrix, we're doing to ourselves. The machines/agents will just be glorified janitors and babysitters.
Nov. 17, 2012, 8:15 p.m. CST
I don't know how right this is, but I've heard anything under about 75-80 minutes is considered a short, while anything above that is usually seen as a feature length running time. I'd say in this day and age, anything above 30-40 minutes is starting to push it when calling a film a short. At that rate, why not just make a feature then? At least then a filmmaker can sell it or self distribute it and possibly make some money back or even a small profit. Most of the time it seems short films fall in the 5-15 minute range, maybe 20-25 minutes on the long end. So how about 5-25 minutes as a rough guide for short film length?
Nov. 17, 2012, 11:48 p.m. CST
THE CRUNCH Stylized B&W look, split screens and Kabuki makeup aim at expressionism, depicting computer-borne fragmented characters. SARK-like anomaly-hunter/devil-on-the-shoulder lends few clues as to the exact nature of the co-dependent relationship, creating a difficult sitting which, in the end, appears a purging of programmatic weaknesses. Title may be a reference to cult programmer & phone-phreaker *Captain Crunch*, and kudos to lead actors for diving right into the askew. A LETTER FROM HOME As storytelling this was wonderful, with no false steps whatsoever, and wisely used period detail instead of up-scaled war imagery through VFX. As a WWII war homage, period sentiment re-establishes need for *the good war*; the institution of combat over futility of warfare. Cinematography, location, costumes and editing pacing all seemingly perfect. Still, the *carry-on soldier* ending reminded me of a Warren Zevon song which goes, **Everybody's joining up to fight for the right to be wrong.** JANEY MARY While tugging at the heartstrings with a child running barefoot through the streets (filmed monochrome and scored to harp & violin), may be easy, accomplishing that practically certainly is not. Relieved that this didn't opt out of child's suffering with a dab of humor or happy ending, as typical of American commercial film. Underlying Christian theme not so over the top as to be a drag, and lead tot, casting and production merits unite to accomplish a very exceptional short. LULLABY Rushed look at postpartum psychosis contrasts bleak end with storybook tale, though unsure as to overall intent. Likely a statement on how childbirth can be just as devastating as it can be joyous. ONLINE NOW Opening shots of human connect/disconnect and retro synth score fantastic — could have watched five minutes of that alone. Young persons creating online personalities, secret lives, revenge, lust etc. a predictable mode shift into superficial communication formats creating superficial living. Assembling the multitude of required roles a very involved production, and end results look polished. Overall this week = Melpomene rising!
Nov. 18, 2012, 2:06 a.m. CST
Nov. 19, 2012, 11:30 a.m. CST
Maybe list the date of the update along with the genre/style focus? Maybe show the genre/focus and then list a few of the titles? Also, this feature is just about the best thing ever done on the site and should get its own main navbar link.
Nov. 22, 2012, 3:51 p.m. CST
by Luther Bhogal-Jones
Hi All, Thanks to all of you who watched The Crunch - it was my return to film making after taking a break for 5 years after burning out doing a feature length project with no money... You can read more about the making of The Crunch here: http://www.fasterproductions.blogspot.co.uk/2010/01/shirts-and-ties-and-leave-your-twenties.html Thanks again Mike for posting it up, absolutely over the moon at you highlighting it to the readers of Ain't It Cool. Ta Luth
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