Films / Programs

Shorts in a Feature-Length World

What features elucidate, they encapsulate. What features spell out, they abbreviate. What features diffuse, they concentrate. Frame for frame, shorts present a whole new way of looking at the world – and at film itself. Catch them in any of our themed packages or before a feature.

  • Act of Bravery

    Act of Bravery

    USA , 2009 , 10 min. To save his leading lady, a lovesick stagehand must do the most terrifying thing he can imagine. A satire within an original musical comedy, Act of Bravery is about the wonders and horrors of adolescence.... more
  • Allen Mack

    Allen Mack

    USA , 2009 , 17 min. A police shooting in Queens is examined from three distinct points of view: the deceased's best friend, a waitress in a club who interacted with all parties involved—and the cop who fired the fatal shots.... more
  • Ba Naché dol Fonn Baeo

    Ba Naché dol Fonn Baeo

    USA , 16 min. Ultra-cool Fonn Baeo and his lover Moulousse spend a carefree day in the city. When they reunite with an old acquaintance, however, their charmed lives receive an unexpected jolt. Will their luck run out, or will love prevail?... more
  • Bare Knuckle Duet

    Bare Knuckle Duet

    Canada , 2010 , 11 min. An estranged couple discovers that, indeed, all’s fair in love and divorce.... more
  • Blackberry Stains

    Blackberry Stains

    United Kingdom , 2010 , 15 min. The real tragedy behind 12-year-old Lewis’s death is revealed through the eyes of his best friend, Matthew.... more
  • Cassava Metaphor

    Cassava Metaphor

    Cameroon , 2010 , 15 min. Coco, a 20-something Cameroonian cab driver, relies on his easy charm to flirt with his fares. On this particular day, his conversation with a beautiful, albeit melancholy, passenger is like none other.... more
  • Catafalque

    Catafalque

    Austria , 2010 , 12 min. This powerful story unfolds in almost total darkness where two brothers escape the rage of their abusive father.... more
  • Chicken Heads

    Chicken Heads

    Palestine , 2009 , 15 min. Young Yousef is the only one who knows what happened to his father’s prized sheep.... more
  • Clemency

    Clemency

    USA , 2009 , 18 min. A reporter confronts a sadistic killer who takes her on a terrifying thrill ride she will never forget.... more
  • The Comfort of Cold

    The Comfort of Cold

    USA , 2010 , 4 min. A meditative look at a 74-year-old man’s daily one-mile swim in San Francisco Bay.... more
  • Condemned

    Condemned

    USA , 2010 , 8 min. Twenty-one years after the disastrous Exxon Valdez oil spill, BP’s blowout contaminates the Gulf of Mexico. Will we ever learn to protect our oceans and their wildlife—or will we continue to repeat our mistakes?... more
  • El Cortejo

    El Cortejo

    Spain , 2010 , 15 min. This award-winning short focuses on Capi, the oldest—and best—gravedigger in the cemetery. After years of avoiding the grief of others, he begins to look forward to the weekly visits of a kind widow.... more
  • The Cow Who Wanted to be a Hamburger

    The Cow Who Wanted to be a Hamburger

    USA , 2010 , 6 min. This is a Plymptoon with a whole new look but, as always, with this SDFF regular’s delightfully twisted view of the world.... more
  • The Darkness of Day

    The Darkness of Day

    USA , 2009 , 26 min. SDFF favorite Jay Rosenblatt returns with a moving meditation on loss and isolation, woven together with 16mm footage, original music and voiceover commentary taken from a friend’s journal.... more
  • Daughters

    Daughters

    China , 2009 , 10 min. When Maple, a quiet 14-year old girl living in rural China, is forced into an arranged marriage, she takes a dangerous path to free herself.... more
  • Del: 100

    Del: 100

    USA , 2010 , 13 min. Del: 100 is a visually haunting portrait of centenarian journalist Delores Plested. As a reporter for the New York Times and The Ladies Home Journal in the 1940s and, later, as a trail blazing reporter in Colorado, she witnessed and wrote about many of the major events of the tw... more
  • Delmer Builds a Machine

    Delmer Builds a Machine

    USA , 2010 , 3 min. He may only be a little boy, but Delmer is the right man for a big job.... more
  • Demonology

    Demonology

    USA , 2010 , 40 min. In a plague-stricken world, a doctor uses the trust bestowed upon him to rob the homes of the afflicted. But his scheme is waylaid when he is summoned to Castle Blackwell to treat the young Isabel—and falls in love with her sister, Marguerite.... more
  • Dock Ellis and the LSD No-No

    Dock Ellis and the LSD No-No

    USA , 2010 , 5 min. June 12, 1970. Pittsburgh Pirate Dock Ellis pitches a no-hitter against the San Diego Padres—while under the influence of LSD. This animated recap of the game, with Ellis’s narration, is for fans of the game—or of a good yarn.... more
  • Dreams Awake

    Dreams Awake

    USA , 2010 , 7 min. A meditation on the immigrant experience through the life and poetry of Doroteo Garcia, a 45-year-old janitor and father of two, who discovers his artistic and political voice in the United States.... more
  • Every Day at School

    Every Day at School

    Australia , 2009 , 5 min. Join a class Down Under that spends the first five minutes of every day at school taking action to change the world in positive ways.... more
  • Fish Food

    Fish Food

    USA , 2009 , 11 min. Innocent 14-year-old Kasia brings home a beautiful fish for her family to cook for dinner. But nobody has the heart to kill it!... more
  • Flathead Wild

    Flathead Wild

    Canada , 2009 , 23 min. Flathead Wild explores just what it takes to be a conservation photographer. Join the adventure: experience breathtaking scenery and encounters with wildlife through the viewfinders of professionals who have 13 days to capture iconic images that can be used as tools for conservation.... more
  • Flawed

    Flawed

    Canada , 2010 , 12 min. An enchanting narrative, told storyboard-style using lively watercolor sketches, about a long-distance romance.... more
  • Forty Foot

    Forty Foot

    Ireland , 2009 , 9 min. For decades, it has been a daily ritual for a rugged group of locals to swim in the frigid, deep-sea water near Dublin. The skin may be saggy and pale but the spirit is hardy.... more
  • The Fun Theory: Piano Staircase

    The Fun Theory: Piano Staircase

    USA , 2009 , 3 min. Fitness gurus often remind us to take the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator—but few actually do. Can we get more people to follow their advice by making it fun? See the results here.... more
  • Garbage Angels

    Garbage Angels

    Canada , 2009 , 6 min. What happens when trash meets trash? Could there be life in a dump?... more
  • Get Up, Stand Up

    Get Up, Stand Up

    USA , 2009 , 4 min. Surfing in Wyoming? These guys make it look easy.... more
  • God of Love

    God of Love

    USA , 2010 , 18 min. A lovestruck, lounge-singing darts champion finds his prayers answered when he mysteriously receives a box of love-inducing darts.... more
  • Greenhorns

    Greenhorns

    USA , 2009 , 20 min. Young farmers have become the poster children of the postmillennial zeitgeist. In many communities these bright 20- and 30-somethings are leading the way into a new world of agriculture, sustainability and economics.... more
  • The Haymaker

    The Haymaker

    USA , 2010 , 24 min. An uninspired youth joins a gym to prove his mother wrong—but has second thoughts when he realizes who the trainer is.... more
  • Hours Before

    Hours Before

    USA , 2009 , 16 min. Two strong performances illustrate the brutal reality of the confrontation between a terribly troubled high school student and his only true friend.... more
  • Incident by a Bank

    Incident by a Bank

    Sweden , 2009 , 10 min. Shot in a single take, this short faithfully dramatizes an actual, unsuccessful bank robbery in Stockholm. Every detail is captured in this surprisingly humorous study of how people react in the most unusual of circumstances.... more
  • Iowa Mixtape

    Iowa Mixtape

    USA , 2009 , 14 min. The Iowans profiled in this short may personfiy small-town America, but they embrace the most urban of musical styles.... more
  • Jackie & Judy

    Jackie & Judy

    USA , 2010 , 4 min. An ode, composed in dance, to famed animator Norman McLaren.... more
  • Kavi

    Kavi

    USA , 2009 , 19 min. An Oscar-nominated short about a boy in India who wants to play cricket and go to school—but instead is forced to work in a brick kiln as a modern-day slave. Unsatisfied with his lot, Kavi must choose to either accept what he's always been told—or fight for a different life.... more
  • Keep Dancing

    Keep Dancing

    USA , 2010 , 21 min. Ninety-year-old dance legends Marge Champion and Donald Saddler keep their love for their craft alive as they continue to create, rehearse and perform.... more
  • Kiss

    Kiss

    Netherlands , 2009 , 10 min. A simple, moving look at young Bruno’s last morning with his soldier father, who is scheduled to return to combat.... more
  • Lady Bug Swarm

    Lady Bug Swarm

    USA , 2010 , 3 min. Rediscover the beauty and wonder of nature through the eyes of a child.... more
  • The Last to Leave

    The Last to Leave

    USA , 2010 , 19 min. The Last to Leave documents the final day of the Vietnam War through the eyes of those who lived it.... more
  • Lastrain

    Lastrain

    Spain , 2010 , 20 min. What first appears to be a chance meeting at a dance club soon becomes an intriguing romantic quest for the truth.... more
  • A Letter for Colton

    A Letter for Colton

    USA , 2010 , 8 min. A Letter for Colton follows the story of John Colton, a vigilante holed up in a remote cabin in the woods.... more
  • Lipsett Diaries

    Lipsett Diaries

    Canada , 2010 , 15 min. A daring, fragmented look into the anguish of famed Canadian filmmaker Arthur Lipsett. Combining original drawings with clips of Lipsett’s own experimental work, Lipsett Diaries is both challenging and moving.... more
  • Lonely Girl

    Lonely Girl

    Australia , 2009 , 2 min. A creative mashup using a hand-drawn line sketch of a young girl, an annoying man and a classic 1950s pop song.... more
  • Lost or Found

    Lost or Found

    Switzerland , 2010 , 22 min. Hanna has lost her memory. In an attempt to discover her identity, she steals suitcases from other women and takes over their personalities. When she finds a gun in a suitcase, she decides to rob a shop. During the robbery she meets Pablo and Luca.... more
  • Love FM_Love' Again

    Love FM_Love' Again

    South Korea , 2010 , 15 min. A visually delightful, hip fable of a convenience-store clerk who longs for a lost love but gets distracted by a new woman, her iPod and an umbrella.... more
  • The Magnetic Detective

    The Magnetic Detective

    USA , 9 min. Lots of loot, a bottle of cheap scotch and the inevitable sexy dame—The Magnetic Detective is a true (and funny) original, which uses uses a Magnetic Poetry Kit, the refrigerator novelty toy, to spell out a classic whodunit on the rusting metal of fire escapes and manhole covers.... more
  • Mama's Boy

    Mama's Boy

    Czech Republic , 2010 , 23 min. What is more dangerous for 14-year-old Petr—the growing distance between him and his single mom or his new friendship with a beautiful and sympathetic barmaid?... more
  • Mamori

    Mamori

    Canada , 2010 , 8 min. The latest film by the award-winning experimental filmmaker combines light, tropical vegetation and the music of Spaniard Francisco López.... more
  • The Monster

    The Monster

    South Korea , 2010 , 23 min. This genre-blending short pits a dedicated mother and her family against an insidious virus. A fascinating look at individuality and conformity within a horroresque narrative.... more
  • The Necessities of Life

    The Necessities of Life

    USA , 2010 , 5 min. Marvelous digital animation illustrates our collective need to connect to ideas, knowledge and culture—in other words, all the things that make us human.... more
  • Never Winter

    Never Winter

    USA , 2010 , 30 min. Based on a true story, Never Winter captures the yearning of 11-year-old Chloe, who is seeking a better life away from her drug-addicted mother.... more
  • The New Species

    The New Species

    USA , 2009 , 10 min. An insect must engineer a daring escape for a fellow insect captured by a bug collector in this fun and expertly crafted piece of stop-motion animation.... more
  • One by One, Ton by Ton

    One by One, Ton by Ton

    USA , 2009 , 9 min. One by One, Ton by Ton is an educational cartoon made at the request of schoolteachers and nonprofits to teach children about the causes and effects of global warming and the steps we can all take to help stop it.... more
  • The Quartering Act

    The Quartering Act

    USA , 2009 , 17 min. France, 1944. A grieving mother confronts the enemy when three desperate German deserters guarding a dangerous secret invade her home.... more
  • Rats in the City

    Rats in the City

    USA , 2010 , 19 min. After his father's death, Matt is forced to choose between his friends in the punk community and honoring his father's memory by going against everything he believes in and joining the army.... more
  • Red Shirley

    Red Shirley

    USA , 2010 , 28 min. Lou Reed sat down with his cousin, Shirley, on the eve of her 100th birthday for a tête-à-tête.... more
  • Ripple Effect

    Ripple Effect

    USA , 2009 , 34 min. Set in the heart of Colorado during one of the biggest snow seasons on record, this film chronicles some homegrown athletes as they find meaning in their surroundings.... more
  • Rita

    Rita

    Italy , 2009 , 19 min. This internationally acclaimed short quietly focuses on 10-year-old Rita, a blind girl who unexpectedly experiences her first moments of longed-for freedom.... more
  • Sami's Cock

    Sami's Cock

    USA , 2010 , 4 min. The Iraq War is explained in an animal parable written by an Iraqi writer in Baghdad. An international cast from the shows Entourage, Prison Break, Angel, Dexter, 24 and Ugly Betty performs it!... more
  • The Skisherman

    The Skisherman

    USA , 2010 , 5 min. Frank is hundreds of yards off the coast of Long Island, in a wet suit, in the middle of the night without a boat in sight. This form of extreme fishing—skishing—brings him a great deal of inner peace and personal satisfaction.... more
  • Some Boys Don't Leave

    Some Boys Don't Leave

    USA , 2009 , 17 min. Jesse Eisenberg stars as a young man who refuses to accept the reality of a romantic break-up.... more
  • Sometimes the Moon is Velvet

    Sometimes the Moon is Velvet

    United Kingdom , 2009 , 16 min. Among the most sumptuous films you will see this year, Sometimes the Moon Is Velvet is a gentle parable about Jack, a solitary fisherman who one day finds a velvet dress in the ocean. He is convinced that the dress will change his luck and, thus, his life.... more
  • Still Here

    Still Here

    USA , 2009 , 21 min. New York City native Randy Baron has lived with HIV for nearly 30 years. A rare genetic mutation has given him the gift of continued health, but it has also made him an inadvertent witness to the horrors of the AIDS epidemic, which has killed almost everyone he loved.... more
  • Still Raining, Still Dreaming

    Still Raining, Still Dreaming

    USA , 2010 , 12 min. The last installment of the three-part series In Memoriam (for Mark LaPore), with all visual materials culled from the video game series Grand Theft Auto.... more
  • Sucker Punch

    Sucker Punch

    USA , 2009 , 18 min. Mark is in the closet—not for his sexual orientation but for his masochistic tendencies, which finally get the attention they need when similarly minded Pauline invites him to compete in bare-knuckle boxing.... more
  • Table 7

    Table 7

    USA , 2010 , 5 min. The seemingly innocent conversation of a couple dining at a restaurant is subjected to an elaborate subterfuge.... more
  • Top Spin

    Top Spin

    USA , 2010 , 12 min. With hard work and family sacrifice, a young table tennis champion works toward becoming one of the top players in the world.... more
  • Touch

    Touch

    USA , 2009 , 11 min. Two women, one subway station and one vital connection.... more
  • Trash-Out

    Trash-Out

    USA , 2009 , 6 min. On the frontline of an American tragedy, this fascinating cinematic essay documents the thoughts and emotions of a group of workers as they “trash out” the remains of a foreclosed family home.... more
  • The Trembling Veil of Bones

    The Trembling Veil of Bones

    Canada , 2010 , 13 min. This acclaimed short offers a stunning combination of live action and computer-generated imagery to give a haunting account of a solitary clockmaker, Bones, who takes tentative first steps to connect with another person.... more
  • Tuned In

    Tuned In

    USA , 2010 , 6 min. Naturally produced radio signals surround us all the time but are inaudible to humans. This film goes on a sonic journey into the world of one natural radio pioneer and his efforts to capture these mesmerizing sounds.... more
  • Tussilago

    Tussilago

    Sweden , 2010 , 15 min. The fast-paced true story of the girlfriend of a West German terrorist who kidnaps a Swedish politician in 1977.... more
  • Wagah

    Wagah

    Germany , 2009 , 13 min. Each evening, thousands of people gather to witness an extraordinary ritual: the lowering of flags at the only crossing along India and Pakistan’s shared 3,323-kilometer border. It is quite a scene, where citizens can get close enough to greet their former neighbors.... more
  • Waiting for the Train: The Toshio Hirano Story

    Waiting for the Train: The Toshio Hirano Story

    USA , 2009 , 20 min. The humorous and heartfelt true story of Japanese immigrant Toshio Hirano, whose life was transformed by the music of country legend Jimmie Rodgers.... more
  • Why We Don't Ride Zebras?

    Why We Don't Ride Zebras?

    USA , 2009 , 12 min. Have you ever wondered why we don’t ride zebras, drink moose milk or eat hippo burgers? Follow a young zebra as he discovers what keeps him from becoming a domesticated animal.... more
  • The Wonder Hospital

    The Wonder Hospital

    USA , 2010 , 12 min. Hugely popular with critics and audiences alike, The Wonder Hospital uses puppetry and 3D animation in order to create an unorthodox world where the pursuit of physical beauty is complicated.... more
  • A Year in the Desert

    A Year in the Desert

    USA , 2009 , 15 min. With each season in the Anza Borrego desert comes the emergence of special creatures: tiny hummingbirds, darting lizards, slithering snakes, head-butting bighorns. Their land is seared by ground temperatures of 180 degrees, swept by flash floods, even blanketed by snowstorms.... more
  • Young Voices on Climate Change

    Young Voices on Climate Change

    USA , 2009 , 14 min. If you adults won’t do something about global warming, then we kids are going to take the reins, says young activist Shannon McComb. She and her cohorts discuss their actions to combat climate change.... more
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