HollyShorts: A Short Look at the Short List


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By Moira Cue
Caryl M. Christian Levy
I could write a dozen articles about the HollyShorts film festival; thanks to a serendipitous meeting with Jeri Sher, documentary filmmaker of LIVE LIFE: Live today like there’s no tomorrow, which tells the true story of a young boy's inspiring survival of a supposedly terminal cancer, I was persuaded to attend the festival. There I gorged myself on a sampling of everything, all the latest up-and-coming filmmakers, all the genres, from all over the world. With panels and after-parties, it was literally impossible to see and more than a fraction of the total.
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A short list of memorable films in alphabetical order doesn't do justice to everything we want to express about the amazing event and how thankful we are to all the filmmakers and attendees who brought such and amazing spirit. We can't wait for next year's festival.
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A GREAT MAN: amazing cast of young actors in this coming-of-age drama by Joshua Dawson
BRAINERD: documentary about a Minnesota town's annual ice fishing competition
COLD WARRIOR: disturbing content, Olympic level coach-gymnast sexual abuse, abortion doping
EMPYREAN: Sophia Savage made an impression on-screen and during the Director's Q&A
JESUS WAS A COMMIE: Jesus, the utopian-communist JIN: Great pace, solid acting, Korean gangster film
KILL SHELTER: metaphoric dystopia with an agenda to raise animal rights awareness
LUCY IN THE SKY WITH DIAMOND: HILARIOUS appearance by Lou Diamond Phillips
MATILDE: in one word, “adorable”
MEMORY SCULPTOR: in one word, “style”
PAPA: real storytelling; an immigrant's tale of acculturation
PENNANCE: Carl Georg Rodsten's gritty, realistic view of contemporary violence
SUMMARNÁTT: a cool, stylized, Nordic fairytale plus vodka
THE EXIT ROOM: a reinterpretation of a bleak literary short classic
The LAST SESSION aka Marriage Counselor: these actors know how to react to each other
THE RIVER: refreshing as a cool dip on a hot day
WHEN THE SAINTS GO MARCHING IN: Tim Schwartz's ode to Skid Row

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