Posted by: kfugrip | February 21, 2007

Free Short Films

So, on the “Free Movies On Demand” channel there is a Sundance Channel section. In this section they have, what they call Academy Shorts 1. It has three films; Cashback, Six Shooter, and Ryan. All of these won the award, as opposed to just being nominated. In the interest of seeing what it takes I thought I would check it out.

I had already seen Ryan. It’s a really good animated film about an animator who was nominated for an academy award in the 60’s and is one of the more influential animators around. He is currently homeless and living in Canada, begging for change and drinking a great deal. All this comes out in the film and is a window into the filmmaker’s life. The filmmaker, Chris Landreth, is a successful animator and did “Bingo”, which I’ve seen. Really good. Wish there was more of a venue for films like this.

Cashback was an enigma for me. I’m not sure how this film won. It was slick and exhibited excellent storytelling technique. Other than that it seemed like the typical short film. Voice-over, quirky characters, fumbled attempts at humor, nudity… I dunno. I can’t figure it out. My best guess is that it’s the professional version of a student film. Does that make sense? I don’t think it was bad. It just didn’t seem award worthy. Perhaps I’m just jealous.

Six Shooter, by the playwright Martin McDonagh was another winner. It was dialogue heavy but smart and was about something (or at least appeared to be). Some of the shoot out stuff was tired, but the characters were well drawn, three dimensional, and I cared about them. This makes sense as an award winner. I feel like this is the type of film I should be striving to make when I make a short.

No stars here, I don’t even know if this should count as movies watched.

In other news, the Venture Bros episode with the yard sale is GENIUS!


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