Happy Valentine's Day

I've seen a lot of short films, but this one is among the finest I've seen for a number of reasons. Watch the editing – is this really just one shot? Watch the cinematography – the camera movement is incredible and the composition is always spot on. Watch the story – although simple, this is both an exhilarating and yet tragic plot sequence. Listen to the soundtrack – the rhythmic pulses and harmonic structure mirror and enhance the visuals. Oh, I could go on. The main thing? This is extraordinary film making.

The Heist

Okay, so this is one of the better parodies I've seen recently. All the "Oceans" movies wrapped up into one tidy short film!

Piove (It's Raining)

It is a day like any other for Tony Bianchi, a respected doctor of a small village; between work, talk to the barber and a game at the bar, the doctor lives his personal routine punctuated by the "unexpected" encounters with the colorful characters of the country, that lead him to confront his role in that small and weird world. And then, as punctual as usual, comes the rain…

Beneath the Ink

In Ohio, there's a tattoo artist that's decided to do his part to "erase the hate." Not only is the story compelling, but the cinematography in this poignant short film is powerful, too.

Powder Keg

By Alejandro Gonzålez Inñårritu

Of all the films from the BMW "The Hire" series, this one is definitely the most cinematic and the least like a car commercial. Frankly, it's devastating. Believe it or not, the director based the events in this film on an actual massacre – known as the Aguas Blancas massacre in Mexico. The fictional events in this film, however, take place in Colombia where the driver is trying to get a war photographer safely out of the country. Curiously, the director claims he was making a kind of love story – the love that a son has for the wisdom of his mother. What do you think?

Regardless, pay special attention to the gritty, raw, cinema verité style used. The color palette is almost totally washed out. The dialogue is sparse, but intense. Most problematic? What does it say that this film focuses on a white male photographer who admits he does nothing but photograph atrocities, but ends up being the hero of what is essentially a corporate commercial?