2020 Oscar Shorts Film Festival
Thursday-Saturday, Feb. 6-8, 2020
Location: Mill Hill Playhouse, Trenton
As in years past, we invite you to cast ballots for your picks to win the Oscars. Ballots that correctly pick the winners will be entered in a raffle to win passes to the Trenton Film Festival, March 26-29, 2020. The Academy Awards ceremony takes place Sunday, Feb. 9.
R rating, 160 min., plus intermission
All five documentary short film nominees will be shown each evening, with complimentary snacks at intermission.
LIFE OVERTAKES ME
John Haptas and Kristine Samuelson, Sweden/USA, 39 min.
Hundreds of refugee children in Sweden who have fled with their families from extreme trauma in their home countries have become afflicted with Resignation Syndrome. Facing deportation, they withdraw from the world into a coma-like state, as if frozen, for months or even years.
LEARNING TO SKATEBOARD IN A WARZONE (IF YOU’RE A GIRL)
Carol Dysinger and Elena Andreicheva, UK, 39 min.
Over the course of 15 years, a class of young girls from disadvantaged neighborhoods in war-torn Kabul, learn to read and write, and grow together in confidence through the joy of skateboarding.
IN THE ABSENCE
Yi Seung-Jun and Gary Byung-Seok Kam, South Korea, 28 min.
When the MV Sewol ferry sank off the coast of South Korea in 2014, over three hundred people lost their lives, most of them schoolchildren. Years later, the victims’ families and survivors are still demanding justice from national authorities.
WALK RUN CHA-CHA
Laura Nix and Colette Sandstedt, USA, 21 min.
Chipaul and Millie Cao reunited in 1980s Los Angeles after being separated by the Vietnam War. Forty years later, they become ballroom dancers to reconnect again and make up for lost time.
ST. LOUIS SUPERMAN
Smriti Mundhra and Sami Khan, USA, 28 min.
Bruce Franks Jr., a leading Ferguson activist and battle rapper who was elected to the overwhelmingly white and Republican Missouri House of Representatives, must overcome both personal trauma and political obstacles to pass a bill critical to his community.
PG Rating, 83 minutes
12:15 p.m. Sat., Feb. 8, 2020 (BUY TICKETS) >
4:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 8, 2020 (BUY TICKETS) >
All five animated short film nominees will be shown along with a selection of other animated films from this year.
Matthew A. Cherry and Karen Rupert Toliver, USA, 7 min.
An African-American father learns to do his daughter’s hair for the first time.
Daria Kashcheeva, Czech Republic, 15 min.
In a hospital room, the Daughter recalls a difficult childhood moment when as a little girl she tried to share her experience with an injured bird with her Father.
Siqi Song, China, 8 min.
A man remembers his childhood and growing up with an annoying little sister in 1990s China. How would his life have been if things had gone differently?
Bruno Collet and Jean-François Le Corre, France, 12 min.
Painter Louis and his wife Michelle are experiencing strange events. Their world seems to be mutating. Slowly, furniture, objects, and people lose their realism. They are “destructuring,” sometimes disintegrating.
Rosana Sullivan and Kathryn Hendrickson, USA, 9 min.
A fiercely independent stray kitten and a chained-up pit bull experience friendship for the first time.
ADDITIONAL ANIMATED SHORTS:
- HENRIETTA BULKOWSKI, USA, 16 min. (featuring the voices of Chris Cooper and Ann Dowd!)
- THE BIRD AND THE WHALE, Ireland, 6 min.
- HORS PIST, France, 5 min.
- MAESTRO, France, 2 min.
Live Action Shorts
R rating, 104 minutes
2:30 p.m. Sat., Feb. 8, 2020 (BUY TICKETS) >
All five live action short film nominees in this popular category will be shown.
Delphine Girard, Belgium, 16 min.
An emergency services dispatcher must tap into all her professional skills when she receives a call from a woman in a desperate situation.
Meryam Joobeur and Maria Gracia Turgeon, Tunisia, 25 min.
Mohamed is deeply shaken and suspicious when his estranged eldest son Malek returns home to rural Tunisia with a mysterious young wife in tow. The emotional complexities of a family reunion and past wounds lead to tragic consequences.
THE NEIGHBORS’ WINDOW
Marshall Curry, USA, 20 min.
The life of a middle-aged woman with small children is shaken up when two free-spirited twenty-somethings move in across the street.
Bryan Buckley and Matt Lefebvre, USA, 23 min.
Inseparable orphaned sisters Saria and Ximena are fighting against daily abuse and unimaginable hardship at the Virgen de La Asuncion Safe Home in Guatemala when a tragic fire claims the lives of 41 orphaned girls.
NEFTA FOOTBALL CLUB
Yves Piat and Damien Megherbi, Tunisia/France, 17 min.
In south Tunisia, two football fan brothers bump into a headphones-wearing donkey in the desert on the border of Algeria. Unaware that two men are waiting for the donkey and its hidden drug stash, the brothers take the animal back home with them.
Double Feature & Reception
6:45 p.m. Sat., Feb. 8, 2020 (BUY TICKETS) >
Join us for a double feature screening of live action and animated short films and reception with complimentary refreshments and coffee during intermission.