Category: Short

May 15, 2024 / Documentary

This film is a moving blend of blues music and images recounts the journey of the millions of African-Americans who made their way from the Mississippi Delta to cities in the North during the 1930s and 1940s. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short.

May 15, 2024 / Musical

Britain’s first musical shot in colour and widescreen (a process called Cosmoscope) is a cabaret-style featurette centred on a group of young people in Chelsea lodgings, watched over by a fatherly caretaker. Eight specially written songs are performed by stage stars of the day – most notably Georgia Brown, who later created the role of Nancy in Oliver!

May 15, 2024 / Short

A well-worn maxim suggests that it’s always best to create stories about ‘what you know’, and Yousaf Ali Khan’s accomplished short Talking with Angels goes a long way to show why this is advice best followed. Based on Khan’s own childhood and created with the intention of bucking the social ideals of what constitutes a ‘normal’ family, the film tells the story of the struggle faced by a poor family as they make their way through 1970s run-down Salford to a clinic for their schizophrenic mum’s regular injection of Largactil, a drug to dampen the voices and visions that plague her and those around her. Viewed as spacs and weirdos by the people they encounter on the journey, it’s 10- year-old Alan who takes charge and must battle with the shame imposed on him by the outside world for the family he loves and belongs to.

May 14, 2024 / Experimental

?O, Zoo! (The Making of a Fiction Film) is ostensibly about the making of Peter Greenaway’s feature film, A Zed and Two Noughts, the production of which Phil Hoffman was invited to the Netherlands to observe. However, Hoffman’s film actually concerns the terms and conditions under which it was itself made. In part, the film translates actuality and memory into invention and fiction in which the symbolic father is cast as a real ancestor. Hoffman rewrites the Canadian documentary tradition into a family memory and romance.

May 14, 2024 / Documentary

This film celebrates the life and work of one of Cornwall’s best-loved artists, Alfred Wallis (1855-1942). We’re invited to look afresh at his paintings in light of the land and seascapes that inspired him. Reminiscences by friends and relatives are the focus rather than appraisal of his work by an authoritative art critic – aptly enough for an artist who worked outside the ‘establishment’.

May 14, 2024 / Animation

Originating from the filmmaker’s childhood confusion over an English expression regarding sex, Marie Paccou’s 1998 animation is the absurd, yet emotive tale of a woman who wakes one day to find a small man growing out of her abdomen. Telling her surreal story through sketchy black-and-white animation, complemented by a philosophical voiceover, at the center of Un Jour is a thought-provoking metaphor that is bound to provoke many different readings.

May 14, 2024 / Animation

Through a meaningful hail of bullets, flying glass and bloodshed, this animated film poses many profound questions about watching and responding to TV violence. Its images and sounds are disturbing and provocative, forcing viewers to examine what, why and how they watch TV, and to examine the effects of television violence on themselves and others.

April 5, 2024 / Animation

A soldier in a Soviet nuclear facility finds himself trapped in a bureaucratic nightmare with no exit in sight. The surreal imagery in this cartoon from Armenfilm includes a platoon of miniature shock troopers, mutant generals and dinosaurs singing We Are the World. The sense that communism had failed to advance, and was in fact causing the Soviet Union to turn in on itself, is powerfully felt.