ONCE THERE WAS III (2002, USA)
BY NINA MCNEELY
Synopsis: 3 women bound to a shared soul oscillating between the throes of brutality and piety. A visceral display of true sisterhood- they suffer together, thrive together and bleed together. Running time: 00:06:34.
Selections/awards: Boston Short FF (Best Music Video), Brussels Independent FF, Super Shorts LA, Super Shorts NY, Amsterdam Independent Film Festival, Obskuur Ghent Film Festival, Toronto Arthouse Film Festival, and more.
About the director: Nina McNeely is a storyteller, provocateur, and a creator. She is a choreographer, visual artist, director, creative director, and animator. Nina is madly in love with people, and finds no greater pleasure than studying the human condition. Throughout her career, Nina has been fortunate to work with Björk, Gaspar Noé, The Weeknd, Rihanna, Foo Fighters, Sam Smith, Alicia Keyes and black midi to name a few - all legends in their own right.
I LOVE YOU DON'T LEAVE ME (2022, USA)
BY ALEX LEOMBRUNO
Synopsis: An absurdist drama following the endless torment experienced by a young woman dealing with an eating disorder. As she tries to cope with obsessive tendencies and routines, Ghillie, a looming swamp monster, follows close behind. Ghillie is the most prominent thing in Morgan’s life — that is, until she meets a strange neighbor while out jogging and invites her over for dinner. What ensues is a stressful encounter for Morgan as she tries to fight past the thoughts of Ghillie. Running time: 00:15:41.
Selections/awards: Boston Short FF, Toronto Arthouse FF (Best LGBTQ+ Film), Super Shorts NY, Super Shorts LA, Bruges International FF, LA Independent Women Film Awards, Women X FF, Brooklyn Horror Film Festival, and more.
About the director: Alex Leombruno is a queer filmmaker and musician from suburban Massachusetts. Her body of work explores autobiographical themes of queerness, mental-illness, and adolescence. Through narrative and experimental films, Alex creates worlds and characters rich with vulnerability and emotion. “I Love You Don't Leave Me” is based on a young girl dealing with the struggles of an eating disorder. The film was Leombruno’s senior thesis at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York.
LOSING IT (2022, AUSTRIA)
BY SASCHA VERNIK
Synopsis: After losing the tool he relies on most, a fraud information worker decides to go back in time to prevent it. Running time: 00:09:30.
Selections/awards: Aesthetica Short FF, Ramsgate IFF, Anima IFF, Venice Film Week, Boston Short FF (Best Animated Short), Amsterdam Independent FF, Bruges International FF, Super Shorts LA, Super Shorts NY, Toronto Arthouse FF (Best Animated Film), and more.
About the director: Sascha Vernik alias REVKIN is a visual artist living and working in Vienna, Austria. After graduating from the University of Applied Arts in Vienna he has primarily worked as a storyboard artist and animation director. His latest short animated film “Losing It” is currently being shown at the festival circuit, having picked up some awards along the way. “Acid Accessories” is his latest graphic novel collaboration with writer Daniel Andrew Wunderer.
MAMMA (2022, NORWAY)
BY ASLAK DANBOLT
Synopsis: The life of Inger and her son Jonas is turned upside down when the man they thought they knew is suspected of unspeakable crimes against children. As painful questions arise, Inger realizes her son is slowly pulling away from her. Inger struggles to find a way back to her son, while at the same time, attempts to deal with her own conflicting feeling towards her husband. Running time: 01:23:48
Festivals: Verona IFF (Winner Best Narrative Feature Film), Brussels Independent FF, Venice Film Week, and more.
About the director: Kjetil (1991, Norway) is a screenwriter and director. In 2014 he acquired a BA in psychology at the University of Tromsø. In the following years, Kjetil has worked in the field of psychiatry, while also working with movie projects. His deep interest in human psychology and storytelling was combined in his debut feature film project In Ashes. He considers filmmakers such a Debra Granik, Michael Haneke, Kenneth Lonergan, Lynne Ramsay, Richard Linklater as main inspirations.
BEFORE THE EARTHQUAKE (2022, SWEDEN)
BY GUSTAV HUGO OLSSON
Synopsis: A man at a restaurant tells his girlfriend a weird story about that he once in his life have had exactly the same feeling as now. That time the whole world started to shake. The girlfriend gets uncomfortable about his behaviour and the story that really doesn't make much sense. They continue their conversation and the table starts to rattle... Running time: 00:06:51.
Selections/awards: Luleå iFF, Pixel FF, Boston Short FF, Verona IFF Super Shorts LA, Super Shorts NY, Amsterdam Independent FF, Toronto Arthouse FF, Obskuur Ghent FF, and more.
About the director: Gustav Hugo Olsson is a Swedish award-winning director, producer, screenwriter, filmmaker and editor with over 10 years of experience in film productions in various sizes and genres.
NEIGHBOUR (2021, GEORGIA)
BY DAVID BORCHKHADZE
Synopsis: The quiet life of Beso and his daughter is suddenly disrupted when neighbouring workers damage the wall of their house. “Neighbour” is a subversive commentary on the plight facing the inhabitants of war torn countries. Running time: 00:30:00.
Selections/awards: Brussels Independent FF, Boston Short FF, Venice Film Week, Sydney World FF, Hong Kong Arthouse FF, Super Shorts NY, Super Shorts LA, New Jersey Independent FF (Best Narrative Short), and more.
About the director: David "Dato" Borchkhadze has been working around sets since the age of 16. He worked as editor at almost all TV channels in Georgia, and later directed episodes on several TV shows, including one of the first reality shows in Georgia. He also has been independently shooting some of the biggest commercials in Georgia. He directed an episode of the film “Tbilisi Love Story” and soon after shot his first independent feature film ,“Seazone” in 2010. In 2019, he shot the first interactive 3-hour commercial film in Georgia, “Arena”.
BY JORGE CAMAROTTI
Synopsis: Ousmane, a newly arrived immigrant living in Montreal, faces a challenging situation when he meets an elderly disoriented lady at the end of his workday. Running time: 00:25:09.
Selections/awards: Toronto International FF, Brussels Independent FF, Boston Short FF (Best Narrative Short), Manhattan Indie FF, Amsterdam Independent FF (Best Narrative Short), Bruges International FF, and more.
About the director: Jorge Camarotti was born in Sao Paulo. In 2003, Jorge moved to Montreal, where he pursued a career as a professional photographer and then as filmmaker. Jorge has directed a dozen short films, both documentary and fiction, always remaining true to giving voice to the most aggrieved individuals of our society. Jorge wrote and directed Kinship (2019), which was selected in many reputable film festivals such as Palm Springs International, Maryland, Clermont-Ferrand (Sodec), Regard and which received a nomination at the 2020 Canadian Screen Awards for best live-action. Besides working as a mentor for aspiring BIPOC filmmakers.