2021

Best Experimental Film
Experimental
Turkey
Runtime:
5 minutes
23 seconds
Director:
Ceylan Özgün Özçelik

A woman, released from prison, drifts between nightmare and reality.

Best Documentary Short
Documentary Short
United States
Runtime:
30 minutes
9 seconds
Director:
Melissa Armstrong, Jason Pidgeon

A film crew follows Amber for one day. During that day, she rescues 19 dogs. Some are dumped on the roadside and left to survive on their own. Others are living in unhealthy conditions at the unregulated and pitifully funded shelters. Watch as one woman saves these homeless animals from certain death.

Amber’s Halfway Home is an exploration of the conditions at government-funded shelters and the consequences of ignoring our country’s homeless animals. But, it’s also a celebration of a woman battling for change in her Southern community, a warrior who saved 2000 dogs in one year.

Best Documentary
Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
54 minutes
10 seconds
Director:
Chris Spencer

For years, members of the city leadership discredited findings of racial bias while continuously increasing the police budget. Advocating for raising taxes instead of laying off officers, the Vergennes Police Chief singled out a domestic violence victim in front of a packed hall to instill fear. After the murders of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor, discussions of police oversight turned personal, forcing the mayor and three city council members to resign; the city was left with no functioning government.

In the end, The Price of Safety stitches together a discussion about the issues facing Vermont’s smallest city through interviews with residents, scholars of race and policing, and elected officials. As conversations surrounding policing and racism evolve nationally, we watch a community reckon with a vital question: what does it mean to be safe?

Raw
Best Narrative Short
Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
10 minutes
29 seconds
Director:
Drake Shannon

Past and present are blurred by a horrifying transgression as a female soldier faces the aftermath of a military patrol in the Middle East. RAW exposes military sexual trauma through the eyes of a soldier struggling to readjust to everyday life.

Best Narrative Feature, Best of the Fest
Narrative Feature
Germany
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
20 minutes
56 seconds
Director:
Katharina Ludwig

Actress Charlotte is struggling with her craft and even more with herself. She has messed up yet another audition and even her self-written apple tree monologue seems to be working against her. Frustrated by the realities of an artistic career and her fear of failing, Charlotte escapes on a camping trip to sunny Croatia with her boyfriend Georg. But the trip’s dynamic changes when their plans of a fun-filled couples vacation misfire: While Georg spends his time at a music festival in the hope of scoring a DJ gig, Charlotte is left stranded in the middle of nowhere. She embarks on a journey of her own, encountering happy campers Benno, a self-proclaimed shaman, and mysterious dropout Tami, to whom Charlotte feels an attraction. Both of them quickly become close companions on Charlotte's journey of self-discovery.

Best Animated Film
Animation
United States
Runtime:
5 minutes
15 seconds
Director:
Jo Meuris

Once upon a time, there was a little girl who fell in love with a beautiful horse named Aurora...

Expressively animated in a naive drawing-style that evokes children’s drawings and the texture of storybook illustrations, Aurora is a bittersweet story about love, friendship, and growing up.

Official Selection
Narrative Short
India
Runtime:
13 minutes
5 seconds
Director:
Nischhal Sharma

Rimi, a housewife, stuck in the mundane life of domesticity finds herself on the threshold of leaving everything behind and embracing liberation when a desire awakens in her after she encounters young and attractive Riya.

Official Selection
Narrative Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
39 minutes
25 seconds
Director:
Kiel Thorlton

After losing his wife during the birth of his second child, Levi is thrust into raising two young girls, alone. However, when forced to borrow money from a ruthless loan shark, he must fight to save his family and the home his family was made in.

Official Selection
Documentary Feature
United States
Runtime:
1 hour(s)
14 minutes
Director:
Thomas Verrettee

A diverse group of middle-school students go on the journey of a lifetime when they compete in a nationwide competition sponsored by MIT to code satellites aboard the International Space Station.

Official Selection
Narrative Short
United States
Runtime:
7 minutes
36 seconds
Director:
Shanden Simmons

Revenge comes on the screen as a person seeking revenge is enacting revenge. 

 

*Winner of the Paducah 48 Hour Film Project 2021

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