Some of the most inventive, entertaining, informative, heartwarming and important cinema is created in short form. Here are the 2018 Academy Award nominees in the category of Best Live Action Short Film. All films in English except as noted. Total running time 99 minutes. Rated R for violence and some language.
Steven, a mentally unstable twenty something, enters an elementary school with a semi-automatic rifle. After he orders the school receptionist, Cassandra, to have the building evacuated, he holds her hostage and instructs her to call 911. With Cassandra as his go-between, Steven tries to navigate the troubled waters he has entered. Directed by Reed Van Dyk. USA. 20 minutes.
The Silent Child
Libby, a profoundly deaf four-year-old, is the youngest child in a family who are all hearing. Unable to communicate but about to start school, Libby is assigned a social worker who teaches her sign language. Libby’s skeptical parents are reluctant to be involved, however, and pose a potential block to Libby’s education. Directed by Chris Overton and Rachel Shenton. UK. British English and Sign Language, both subtitled. 20 minutes.
My Nephew Emmett
In 1955, two white men invade the home of Mose Wright, an African-American preacher in Mississippi, to abduct his 14-year-old nephew, Emmett Till, who is visiting from Chicago. Emmett has been accused of whistling at a white woman, and Mose knows that his fate will be sealed if the men succeed in taking him. Directed by Kevin Wilson, Jr., USA. 20 minutes.
The Eleven O’Clock
A psychiatrist earnestly tries to help his delusional patient, but his efforts are complicated by the fact that the patient believes himself to be the doctor. With each trying to out-analyze the other, their session spirals out of control. Directed by Derin Seale and Josh Lawson. Australia. 13 minutes.
Watu Wote (All of Us)
A Christian living in Kenya boards a chartered bus to visit a relative and is uncomfortable being surrounded by Muslim passengers. The bus is stopped by the violent terrorist group Al-Shabaab, whose members demand that the Muslims identify the Christian passengers. Directed by Katja Benrath and Tobias Rosen. Germany/Kenya. Swahili and Somali w/English subtitles. 22 minutes.
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