Short Film Festival Fun

The Worldwide Short Film Festival kicked off this year with a bang. The Bloor Cinema where the movies were shown was packed, complete with a line going (stereotypically) around the block.

The lineup of films on the inside of the theater was definitely worth the wait. A selection of the best short films seems to have been made, with more to come in the next few days.

Having never attended a screening of all short films I didn't know what to expect, I must say that I am really impressed by what was shown.

A must-see is Home Game by Martin Lung from Norway. Every morning is a struggle to get out of bed and this short film has captured that struggle best. Made to look like an early 1980s sports show complete with sportscasters providing a running commentary on one man's adventure to get to work on time. The replays are very well done.

Language is, obviously, something we use everyday. Fluent Dysphasia explores language in a comedic way by using a father and daughter relationship. After a night on the town the father awakes to find that he can only speak Irish and can't understand any English. Parts of it feel like a cheap student film, but as a whole it is well done with some good acting accompanied by a fun script.

Sons of War by Taikia Watitti shows us that even in stressful times humans can still find ways for fun. The film had an aesthetic taste akin to the Lord of the Rings trilogy; Weta (Peter Jackson's special effects company) did all the visual effects for the movie so similarities make sense. The characters in the movie are entertaining and remind us that soldiers are still just boys at heart.

One movie that has received a lot of international attention is Birthday Boy. I found the animation of people to be very awkward and lame. All the non-human elements of the animation were nice on the eyes, but the way the boy moved and looked seemed a lame attempt at making him appear real.

When it comes to pure aesthetic joy one needs to watch Rain is Falling. I found this short film to have a weak story though. The thing that made this movie was the fact that every scene was beautiful to look at.

The Oscar winning animated film Ryan is absolutely fantastic. I was worried that since I've already seen it twice that I would be bored during this screening, but, there is something to be said (and enjoyed) by watching this animation on a large screen. Each character is brought to another level it seems and is even more visually stunning.

A repeat screening of the opening night gala films will happen again at the Bloor Theatre on Thursday June 14th at 7:00 pm. Be sure to check it out because it is one stellar collection of films and I can't wait to see what else the festival has to offer.

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