2021 Award Winners
2021 OFFICIAL SELECTIONS
Dir. Ashlee Macropoulos, 10 min.
An experimental variation on ALICE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS. A young woman struggles with love, sex, drugs and memory. Alice has the perfect life, she loves her boyfriend and parties with her friends all the time. She never considered that her behavior might be fueled by avoidance. VISCERA is the visual depiction of Alice's internal journey to unlocking herself.
It's Time for Tea
Dir. Matthew J. Kaplan, 10 min.
After the death of their young daughter, all that remains in Rebecca and Allen's home is an extensive toy collection and profound grief. Both are attempting to process their loss: Rebecca chooses to repress her pain, while Allen regresses to their child's age in order to replace her. When an unconventional therapist visits with them, he assures Rebecca he can bring her husband back. But first, she must enter into Allen's land of make-believe.
Dir. Michael Goldburg, 16 min.
Benny Boon, a New York City con man, needs to come up with $50,000 in 3 days in order to pay off a gangster - or else. Luckily, he meets a washed-up actress, Kitty Kinkaid, who's desperate for a comeback and claims to have the money to bankroll a screenplay.
Trouble is My Business
Dir. Tom Konkle, 1 hr. 30 min.
A dark tale of love and betrayal, told in the classic style of film noir. Private detective Roland Drake has fallen on hard times in a harsh world. Drake is being evicted from his office and disgraced by a missing persons case, which has ruined him in the public eye and with police officials. It seems like it's all over for him. Then, redemption walks in... with curves.
Dir. Shin Saito, 1 hr. 30 min.
German war-time experiments, Symphony No. 9 led by Furtwängler, and conch shell poison. This is a tale of love and science fiction depicting the fate of a couple shaped by these three entwining elements unbound by time.
Dir. Jennifer Plotzke, 6 min.
Rideshare gone very wrong.
Dir. Megumi Haggerty, 13 min.
A woman with Alzheimer's and her husband experience an unexpectedly magical day in New York City.
Leave It All Behind
Dir. Paul Santoli, 16 min.
A struggling actor tortured by his past finds an opportunity to make his dream come true.
Dir. John Gallagher, 9 min.
The morning after a wild party, a hungover couple, Tori and Michael, discover something odd in the middle of their living room. Tori's sister, mother and neighbor all come to take a look. As details about the night are revealed, the couple's future changes forever.
Dir. Eric Whitten, 19 min.
The plans of an innocent and gullible man to reconcile with his estranged son are thwarted when he becomes an unwitting accomplice in an international plot to take down the Vatican Bank.
The House on Cox Curve
Dir. Amanda Brooke Lerner, 19 min.
The Jeffersons, a stiff, dry couple on the rocks, drag their begrudging teenage daughter on a family weekend away to what they assume to be a quaint bed and breakfast.
Dir. Juan Pablo Arroyo Abraham, 1 hr. 97 min.
Julián decides to embark on a journey with no destination, leaving everything behind. Ten years later he returns in search of his past and finds María, the woman who was once his wife, in the company of Santiago, a writer that has given her solace. Julián's arrival then takes all of their lives down an unexpected path.
Pew, Pew, Pew
Dir. Loren Dunn, 13 min.
When Miles tries to rejoin his geeky crew at a cosplay convention, Anita is having none of it. But before she can send him packing, the devious Lord Moro ambushes the crew, forcing these old friends to reunite in an epic, cosplay "blaster" battle.
Dir. Anne Hollowday, 4 min.
After a dramatic injury puts a professional dancer out of action for six months, she reflects on how our physical thoughts reveal who we are, perhaps even more than what we say.
The Glowing Stone
Dir. Li Youen, 20 min.
Wen Jiefang, a 9-year-old-boy, who picks up a glowing stone that could fulfill his wishes. A series of the story happens around him and his family and the stone.
Lost Treasure of the Valley
Dir. Robert Husted, 25 min.
A photographer and an adventurer discover that all of the abandoned shopping carts in LA's San Fernando Valley lead to a hidden cave off of Sepulveda Blvd. with a lost treasure inside - guarded by a dragon!
Dir. Rodney Ferrer, 1 hr. 20 min.
New York comedian Bobby Mortal was once the hottest ticket in town. After a struggle with the bottle, a cocaine addict brother, and an ex-wife who married his agent, he is ready for a comeback with the cops hot on his tail.
Dir. Zachary Ross, 10 min.
A fanatic finally meets his favorite over-the-hill wrestler at a mediocre comic book convention and attempts to make him relevant again.
Dir. Harold Eric, 30 min.
Five twenty-somethings become lost while on a road trip to a weekend getaway due to their navigator's alcohol-fueled gross negligence. As a result, they are no longer destined for sunshine and pool time.
Dir. Aimée Schaefer, 12 min.
When his friend goes missing in the summer of 1989, Jimmy learns that the Island isn't the only thing that's changing. Based on true stories from the community of Roosevelt Island, NYC.
Dir. Jordan Paley, 7 min.
After losing his faith, a former priest pays for the company of a woman that bears a striking resemblance to his long lost love.
Dir. David Tyson Lam, 9 min.
Cat's resentments peak against her unruly 5-year-old for causing the decline of love in her relationship with her husband, when one day she suddenly finds herself empowered to end her misery with one single act.
Dir. Mark Daniel Cade, 10 min.
Jim is a single guy who doesn't want to be single. He believes that if he approaches dating in a logical, rational way that he will surely find his soulmate. Jim has a few things to learn...
Dir. Michael Charof, 13 min.
A desperate family struggling with substance use and child neglect resort to physical violence against each other to gain a drug prescription.
Dir. Niav Conty, 21 min.
A woman, confronting her past after her wealthy husband's death, must turn to the one person she thinks she can trust: her stepson, but, the young man's feelings for her might push them both into a complex life they can't survive.
Blood on the Risers
Dir. Caleb Fanning, 19 min.
Charlie Evans, a paratrooper who jumped into Normandy on D-Day. After three years of being gone, he comes home to his wife, Afton, who has no idea about the burdens and trauma that Charles is bringing home with him. The film tells the story of his struggle to reconcile the trauma of war and his peaceful life at home.
Mirando al Mar
Staring at the Sea
Dir. Angel Puado Veloso, 1 hr. 30 min.
Staring at the Sea is a film about two lives that cross paths at the end of their journey only to find themselves beginning the journey anew.
Angel is a man from Madrid that goes to spend a few days in Alicante and meets Chelo, who turns his life upside down. Between the two, a romance is born and Angel sees it as his last chance to find happiness.