In 2003, the small Kochi Racetrack in southern Japan was in trouble. The Lost Decade hit the provincial raceway hard, and the staff was scrambling to find some way to stave off bankruptcy. One day, they found an unlikely savior. This is the story of Haru Urara, the losingest racehorse in Japan, and how she gave hope to millions.
"The Choking Victim" by MeFi's own Alexandra Kleeman is a short story that portrays one new mother's anxiety. The dream-like fiction linked at the author's web site offers a wider perspective on her work. [more inside]
“To Become Louder, Even Still”: Responses to Sexual Violence in Literary Spaces Apogee Journal has collected fourteen responses from writers to sexual violence perpetrated in the literary community. [more inside]
32 Short Films About Glenn Gould
22 Short Films About Springfield
10 Short Films About Wakko Warner
Several Thousand Short Films About Glenn Gould [more inside]
22 Short Films About Springfield
10 Short Films About Wakko Warner
Several Thousand Short Films About Glenn Gould [more inside]
Bear Story won the Best Animated Short Oscar 2016. It is an allegory of Chile in the '70s. [more inside]
( SLYT ) With the ability to travel in time, a lonely girl finds love and comfort by connecting with her past self. Eventually faced with rejection she struggles with her identity and gender, and as time folds onto itself only one of them can remain. Director: Eddie Alcazar Composer: Flying Lotus Producer: Javier Lovato
For two days in 1975, rock band KISS took over the town of Cadillac, Michigan, and played at the Cadillac High School Homecoming. [SLYT] What started as a football coach looking for a way to inspire his players ended up bringing the entire town together in the name of rock and roll. [via]
What would have happened if Harry Potter had been a squib? How might the story of the books gone differently? Well. Perhaps Arabella Figg noticed something first.
Fabrice Mathieu created something new, and an homage to the shadowy, noir films he loves with two shorts: In the Shadow, creating a film from shadows and silhouettes, and Master of Suspense, a story built from Alfred Hitchcock's cameo introduction and cameo appearances.
Pixar's new film, The Good Dinosaur, is the second animated dinosaur film to come out in time for Thanksgiving. The previous one came out 22 years ago, with executive producer credits for Steven Spielberg and a whole host of stars lending their voices to the film, telling the story of dinosaurs coming to New York City. And it bombed. Let's go back in time and look at We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story. [more inside]
Before the law sits a gatekeeper. To this gatekeeper comes a man from the country who asks to gain entry into the law. But the gatekeeper says that he cannot grant him entry at the moment. The man thinks about it and then asks if he will be allowed to come in later on. “It is possible,” says the gatekeeper, “but not now.”Franz Kafka's Before the Law, animated as a pinscreen prologue to Orson Welles' film adaptation of Kafka's The Trial (Pop Matters review), and a stand-alone "free interpretation" short titled The Guardian by N9ve Studios. [more inside]
Puppy Love, a fetching first date tale, took home 1st place in this year's Des Moines 48 Hour Film competition. Woof.
Gamasutra: “TV host Stephen Colbert has jumped onto [Twine] with a new, free game: Escape from the Man-Sized Cabinet.”
"The thing I find very exciting is waiting for the subway train and sometimes you'll get a glorious one that arrives decorated like a birthday cake!" Watching My Name Go By is a short 1976 BBC documentary about graffiti, artists, and graffiti artists in New York City. The film is based on Norman Mailer's 1974 essay for Esquire magazine, "The Faith of Grafitti." [via]
Em Ford is a filmmaker, beauty blogger, and former model. When Ford, who suffers from acne, began posting pictures of herself without makeup on social media, she received over 100,000 comments. In response, she created the short film, You Look Disgusting [SLYT] "to show how social media can set unrealistic expectations on both women and men." [more inside]
Michael struggles with this sudden loss of privacy. It's too much for him, and he wants to discuss it at the next meeting.The New Middle Class, a short story by Dolan Morgan. [cw: body horror]
"I don't have time to myself, either, you know," the Replacement says bitterly.
Michael starts to interrupt, but Dr. Kenston reminds him that the Replacement has the talking stick right now. "You've lived a whole life on your own, Michael," it says. "I've never had that. I've never been by myself. Never even existed completely outside of your abdomen."
"For those who love books, but don’t have enough time for reading. Here are the best books you can read in under an hour each." 24 books to read in under an hour (infographic) by Piotr Kowalczyk at Ebook Friendly. (via Electric Literature) Previously: What to read when pressed for time
Join Mr. Piggy on an adventure through time and space in the short, animated film Mr. Piggy Dies in 25 Dimensions. [SLV NSFW]
Deep water freediving exposes its practitioners to a form of narcosis, which induces several symptoms, among which a feeling of euphoria and levity that earned this phenomenon its nickname of “raptures of the deep”. In the short film, Ocean Gravity, world champion freediver Guillaume Néry shows us what freediving looks like. In the short film, Narcose, he shows us what it feels like. [warning: may be vertigo-inducing, NSFW] [more inside]
Animated stories that parents tell their children: How milkshakes are made (really bouncy grass) and why you have to be quiet on trains (beware of bears, they're unstoppable). But if you're grown up now and want to really know if your parents were full of ... molasses, let Ken Jennings share the truth behind 17 things parents tell their kids, and five more excerpts from his collection of such because-I-said-so-isms.
Projections in the Forest is a micro-scale projection video ("making of" short) that imitates a bioluminescent forest (project site), with projections to look like foxfire and such bioluminescent mushrooms, plus some animals and elements that usually don't generally glow in the dark. If you like such projection techno-magic, 3hund have a few other projection projects on their Vimeo account.
It really looks like something straight out of a nightmare what the guys at Film Shortage picked this time. Venetian masks are haunting.
Porters, Bouncers, and Bartenders, third installment of the amazing Terminal Bar film series. For ten years, Sheldon Nadelman took thousands of black and white photographs while bartending at the Terminal Bar, Times Square's most notorious watering hole of the 1970s. Murray Goldman, the bar's owner since 1957 was Sheldon's father-in-law as well as the filmmaker's grandfather. The Terminal Bar was featured in Martin Scorsese's film Taxi Driver. [more inside]
Racism Insurance Coverage for White Privilege is a clever short promoting the upcoming Sundance favorite Dear White People.
Nuggets, by Andreas Hykade, is a short animated film about addiction. [SLYT]
The Tell-Tale Heart by Annette Jung Ed hates the disgusting eye of his father and so he made up his mind to take the life of the old man to rid himself of the eye forever. Based upon the short story "The Tell-Tale Heart" by Edgar Allan Poe. [Previously]
30 years ago, Rick Rubin was a college student, living in NYU's Weinstein Residence Hall, room #712. It was there that Def Jam Records was formed, shifting the focus of hip-hop from the MCs to promote the DJs, too. Rubin and his label quickly outgrew the dorm, and he hasn't been back since. Recently he returned, and the adventure was captured and put into context by Rolling Stone Film's mini-documentary, Rick Was Here. New footage rolls alongside old, with some animations to bring a few audio-only stories to life. [more inside]
Scissors or Sword? The Symbolism of a Medieval Haircut:
"Simon Coates explores the symbolic meanings attached to hair in the early medieval West, and how it served to denote differences in age, sex, ethnicity and status."
“Aspirational,” by Michael Frost for Vs. Magazine
"Vs. Magazine cover girl Kirsten Dunst stars in what is NOT your typical fashion film. Between late Ubers and selfie-obsessed fangirls, Kiki gives us a tongue-in-cheek look at celebrity culture and social media... Next time you take a selfie with your favorite star, think twice - unlike the girls in this film.vsmagazinelive.com
"If I had been born 10 years earlier, I don’t think I would be an animator," wrote Makoto Shinkai. Despite the fact that even his earliest animations were completed with a Mac and a tablet, his style is influenced by the works of prior Japanese animators, even earning him the title "the next Miyazaki," which he says is an honor, but overstating his skills. From his earliest short, Other Worlds, he set some of the tone and pacing featured in his subsequent works, which are discussed in the lead up to an interview Shinkai did with Tested. [more inside]
Who really controls Hollywood? Now it can be told! (SLFOD)
Butter Ya'Self (Vimeo; YouTube) is "basically ... the story of Drake and Lil’ Wayne [as told with an anthropomorphic banana, hot dog bun, and stick of butter]. ButterKrust is 100% based on Wayne – Nana Splits isn’t based on anyone real but his relationship to ButterKrust is based on Drake’s relationship to Lil’ Wayne. The most important thing I wanted to express in this video is the relationship between them, how tight they are and how much Nana Splits looks up to ButterKrust." That's the story from Julian Petschek, who is studying at The California Institute of the Arts. [more inside]
Take a bit of nonsense rhyming about Moses' toeses as set to a lively tap dancing number by Gene Kelly and Donald O'Connor turns into something else in this short animation of a ghost girl joining a dancing pair of shoes (YouTube; Vimeo).
Junk Head 1 - Start with the stop motion animation look of an old Tool video, add in a bit of that Jeunet/Caro style humanity and humor, weave in some Cronenberg-like WTF creatures, and wrap the whole thing in an interesting story, and you have yourself a very cool short from Yamiken Hori.
The collaborative wiki-as-fiction site, Secure Contain Protect (previously), held a contest to determine which entry will get the coveted SCP - 2000 spot. The theme? Science Fiction. Read the winning entry here, and the rest of the alien-spaceship-crashing-memetic-virus-watching-living-TV-show-spreading contestants here.
Our Drone Future — A short film by Alex Cornell. "Created with DJI Phantom Drones, After Effects, Premier, Logic, GoPro, and a liberal interpretation of FAA regulations". If not actually the future of domestically deployed drones, it's probably the future of sub-$2K filmmaking hardware (if you don't include the software licenses and, um, FAA fines).
WIND is an animated short about the daily life of people living in a windy area who seem helplessly exposed to the weather. However, the inhabitants have learned to deal with their difficult living conditions. The wind creates a natural system for living.
"The Most Quoted Man in News" (vimeo) is a short about Greg Packer, a man who, since 1995, has been quoted at news events across the country at least 100 times, according to an Associated Press memo. [more inside]
Aningaaq is a short companion piece to Gravity, written and directed by Gravity co-writer Jonas Cuaron.
Terry Gilliam fans are patiently waiting for the release of "The Zero Theorem", his first film in four years. In the meantime, let's go back thirty years ago to the moment that Gilliam really found his footing as a director in between the filming of "Time Bandits" and "Brazil". It all concerns a bunch of elderly accountants... [more inside]
Banjo Gyro, one of the weirder videos on YouTube, is a short film about three restaurant employees—Sammy, Bill, and Finger—who hunt demons. Sort of like Invader Zim meets David Lynch's "sitcom" Rabbits.
In a not too distant future, societies of all countries come to rely on an intricate network of artificial intelligence devices designed to bring efficacy to man's life. Yet, man continues to devour himself in useless wars. A strong political hierarchy now divides all powers into three factions, and A.I. devices rapidly gain ground as efficiency becomes a priority. As social revolts grow worse everyday, authorities seek ways to control their citizens. They decide to carry out a series of tests that will determine not only whether some crucial powers can be transferred to non human entities, but also whether man is ready to yield those powers. The world has become a cell for all man and women, who withstand and endure their lives, rather than living them. Machines might have found a solution. From now on, you are set free. [more inside]
"To launch a science-fiction anthology series is to dare comparisons with The Twilight Zone. Happily, Welcome to Paradox is not unworthy to be mentioned in the same sentence as Rod Serling's classic show. The weekly dramas, all based on short stories, are set in Betaville [a nod to Jean-Luc Godard's 1965 dystopian sci-fi/noir film, Alphaville], a future city filled with ultrahigh technology and perennial human unhappiness.... Bottom Line: Makes the future look intriguing." The Sci-Fi channel only produced 13 episodes (archived view of their site; ep list on Wikipedia), letting the series end with one season. The show was only released on DVD in Australia, which now seems to be out of print. But fear not! You can watch the episodes on YouTube in a convenient playlist, or with separate episodes linked below the fold. [more inside]