Another unique hand-made short film. I'm OK is an animated short film made by London-based animator / filmmaker Lizzy Hobbs, inspired by the life and art of Austrian Oskar Kokoschka. Following the end of a stormy love affair, Expressionist artist Oskar Kokoschka enlists in the First World War. After suffering serious injuries in battle, he experiences a series of memories and visions as medics transport him through the forests of the Russian front. I'm OK explores "the wounds of heartbreak & trauma." The gorgeous short features individually hand-painted frames that put together tell stories about Kokoschka's life and art. "I found the music that [Kokoschka] associated with the period, read his plays, his writing, and studied all his prints and paintings. And then I animated on and around the work," Hobbs explains. View the short below.
"The only thing that separates us from the street - is that door, and our deadbolt. All I want is to shut out the world…" A heartbreaking story brought to life using an unconventional animation style. Girl In The Hallway is a short film directed by Canadian animator Valerie Barnhart, who taught herself animation after graduating from the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design as a Visual Arts Major. She uses charcoal, pastel, and graphite drawn on black paper to tell the story of why one man can never forget the girl in the hallway. Featuring a "witness testimony" spoken word performance by Jamie DeWolf - which makes this even more heartfelt because it's so powerful. This is a very creative way to tell this story, and I like how the distinct animation style makes it feel so much more visceral. Take a quick break and watch this short below.
"This is not just paranoia." Netflix has debuted an official trailer for an indie documentary titled Ghosts of Sugar Land, a 21-minute short doc that premiered at the Sundance Film Festival earlier this year. Made by filmmaker Bassam Tariq, of the docs These Birds Walk and 11/8/16 previously. Ghosts of Sugar Land is about a group of suburban Muslims who attempt to reconcile the disappearance of a close friend and must learn to live with the consequences of his choices. Winner of a Short Film Jury Award for Non-Fiction at Sundance, the film "stirringly traces the guilt, fear, and sadness of these men as they try to piece together what happened to their friend." The way everyone has to cover up their faces in this is frightening and really worrying - not just a compelling creative choice, but it says so much. But the twist at the end is a whammy.
"I am a strong, empowered monster." Don't miss this funky, fantastic short film Martha the Monster, from writer / director Christopher Weekes. In an upside-down reality where humans live with monsters, Martha, a 20-something furry, must learn to hold her own in a modern metropolitan city. It features full-size puppet characters, similar to those in Where the Wild Things Are. "I was massively inspired by the work of Spike Jonze, and was really drawn to the idea of a fun, colourful way of exploring what it’s like to blend in within a big city when you’re so obviously built to stand out," Weekes explains. "Blending a mix of facial capture with traditional puppet techniques… a little of the old, a little of the new." This stars Rose Byrne, Bobby Cannavale, Kailah Cabanas, Nicholas Brown, and Krew Boylan. Another must watch short.
"How does a robot get drunk? How does a robot shave?" Who's up for some robot love? Rust in Peace is a fun short film written & directed by Will Welles. After playing at festivals over the last year, the 17-minute film is now available to watch online in full. The short is about an abandoned robot that awakes alone in a junkyard. He travels home, to his creator's ranch, to learn if the love he feels is returned. "The heart of the film is a breakup story," Welles reveals. "The kind of breakup where you have a big fight, think its over, then the next day your partner is in the kitchen making eggs like nothing is wrong." The short stars Rhys Coiro & Douglas Tait. With a clunky practical robot that walks and talks, and wonders if anyone still loves him.
"They're everywhere! Don't you see." Dive back into the mind of sci-fi filmmaker Ruairi Robinson, who just released his latest short film online. Corporate Monster is the latest film by Irish filmmaker Ruairi Robinson, who we are big fans of here at FS. Over the years we've featured his other sci-fi shorts including Blinky and The Leviathan. Inspired by the current state of the world, which Robinson rather aptly describes as "f*cked", Corporate Monster tells the story of a man who loses his job and "starts to believe that parasitic creatures are controlling the world." It's basically They Live remade by Neill Blomkamp, filtered through Robinson's mind. The short film stars Kett Turton and Jenna Coleman. This gets a bit too real half-way through, but that's the point. To reflect society, and make us think. Maybe there really are aliens out there?
How can two brothers growing up in a quiet suburb in the same home, take such different paths? Another excellent animated short film worth watching. Substance is a short film written and directed by Jamaal Bradley, who is now working at Valve after working at DreamWorks Animation. He made this short in his own spare time, and it's beautiful in quite a few unique ways. Substance is about two brothers who end up in a fight when "different means of living" threatens their family, but it will be a young girl who reminds them of their bond. It's co-written by Michael Yates, who was also the Lead Story Artist. I love that you can't hear any of the dialogue in this, only the music which brings greater emotional depth to the film. See below.
"Where is everyone?" FX and NBC have released the surprise new short film titled Battle at Big Rock, following up the most recent Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom movie. Directed by Colin Trevorrow, who is currently working on Jurassic World 3, the short just debuted on FX and is now available to watch online. Trevorrow explains the setup continuing directly after the end of FK: "You have these animals loose in an unfamiliar environment, they’re disoriented, struggling to adapt. The first people they run into are bound to be camping. I wanted to see that." He adds that, "it's a celebration of everything we love about the franchise" and a movie that they've always wanted to make. Battle at Big Rock stars André Holland, Melody Hurd, Natalie Martinez, and Pierson Salvador, and runs only 8 minutes. "There have been a few sightings, but this is the first major confrontation between dinosaurs and humans." This gets intense! Watch it below.
"My home, sweet, home. Where I feel free. You beautiful castle with a wooden dome…" Meet the fearless, brave Mr. Hedgehog. We highly recommend this lovely short film titled Hedgehog's Home, a stop-motion animated short film made by Montreal-based filmmaker Eva Cvijanovic. The short is about, as you might have guessed, a hedgehog living in a forest who is made fun of by a sly fox, a greedy bear, a wicked wolf, and a muddy wild boar. Cvijanovic creates her shorts using felt and cloth, which gives them an especially cuddly look and feel. Featuring the voice of Kenneth Welsh as the narrator, delivering a sweet little poem based on the the classic story by Branko Ćopić. Featuring twangy, funky music by Darko Rundek. It's a beautiful, heartfelt tribute to the feeling of comfort we all have being at home, and what a home means. Watch below.
"Do you know what photography means?" "When you break it down, it really means drawing with light." An official trailer has debuted for a short film called A Million Eyes, the latest made by British filmmaker Richard Raymond (Desert Dancer). This first premiered at the HollyShorts Film Festival and is stopping by the Raindance Film Festival in the UK next this month. The short is about a gifted young photographer, grappling with his mother's alcoholism, who sets out to capture something he loves. This stars Elijah M. Cooper as Leroy, with Joe Morton and Katie Lowes. As a photographer myself, I adore this trailer and the way it speaks so lovingly about photographer and the power it has to capture "something you love". Hopefully this short will end up online soon, as I'd love for everyone to take just a moment and watch this.
"I'm-- so-- hungryyyy--!!" This new short film from the creator of DOMU is super adorable and makes my stomach growl for tasty food. Mogu & Perol is a story about two friends living on an island where delicious food can be found everywhere. As the title says, it's about Mogu: "A young Big Foot boy who loves nothing more than cooking a delicious meal." And Perol: "A spoiled little girl with a BIG appetite who doesn't know the first thing about cooking." Dwarf Studios' website lists this short film as an "episode", so perhaps they're going to make more of these to release online featuring Mogu & Perol cooking things up. All the food in this looks so incredibly delicious, don't watch on an empty stomach or only watch with some food to munch on.
"Oh! I just want to be a good boy." This animated short film isn't for kids. Put them to bed, and then give this a watch. The Wrong End of the Stick is the graduation project of filmmaker Terri Matthews, who studied at The National Film and Television School UK. The film is about a man named Malcom Fletcher, a neurotic, middle-aged teacher lost in a dull marriage with his wife. Facing an identity crisis and breakdown, he begins to explore a deep, hidden sexual desire. Featuring the voices of Nick Ball and Mandy Dassa. The short film is a look at pup play, a sexual kink that involves dressing up and acting like animals. It's a clever and thoughtful take on this subject and embraces the idea with positivity. I like the mix of traditional 2D animation and practical / real-life sets. And I like the pervasive awkwardness throughout, it sets a tone but also helps nudge the story. It's refreshing to see such a unexpected, kinky animated short. Watch below.