London Film Festival 2016: Short Film Awards
The 60th London Film Festival Short Film Awards feature quite an unusual selection. The theme of the festival this year is international, diverse and inclined towards independent filmmaking. With an eclectic line-up, the mood of the Short Film group is artistically adventurous and conceptual with an arthouse camp cult vibe.
Particularly beautiful and original is French-Hungarian animated short Love, by Réka Bucsi, set in space, with animals and plants merging and changing shape and colour. The film basks in dreamlike charming nonsense, with a water dinosaur, horses sprouting trees and two black cats meeting and turning red with love, all to sounds akin to the Amazon. Gorgeous animated illustrations blossom and bloom like a limitless ballet among the planets – pure imagination in free fall.
An intriguing documentary of witnessing war beneath his window in Syria, Issa Touma’s collaborative endeavour 9 Days – From My Window in Aleppo takes us to a battle zone from his apartment, where daily conflicts continue in the streets below. It is only safe to sleep in the kitchen, and watching a huge TV, he reveals that he has no phone or internet and has run out of food.
The Trembling Giant by Patrick Tarrant uses very extended vibrating shots of trees and foliage to highlight the dangers of losing our forests, but is not easy to watch.
Anna Maguire’s humorous piece Your Mother and I is thought-provoking. A teenage girl listens to her father’s memories about having drastically changed the world with her mother: at first science fiction comes to mind, until it’s apparent he is likely to be mentally ill. Such flights of fancy, however, are rather wonderfully freeing vehicles of the imagination, in a similar spirit as the animated piece Love.
Pickle by Amy Nicholson is a hilarious and charming account by a couple of their menagerie of animals adopted over the years, including a cross-eyed cat, a paraplegic possum and a deformed fish propped up by a sponge – with priceless descriptions of their lives and their peculiar causes of death, such as an abduction by an owl or an otter attack.
Very moving, the Italian-French Il Silenzio (pictured) by Ali Asgari and Farnoosh Samadi is about a Kurdish child in Italy who translates for her mother, but becomes silent when she must tell her she has advanced cancer.
The potential winners could be Love, Il Silenzio, Pickle, or 9 Days – From My Window in Aleppo but this is in all an interesting group.
For further information about the 60th London Film Festival visit here.
Read more reviews from the festival here.
Watch the trailer for 9 Days – From My Window in Aleppo here: