THE BEST Short Films

Sounds Good

Sounds Good

Sander Joon’s cacophonous animated short film is best experienced with headphones or nice loud speakers. As its vignettes play out, each object on screen makes a familiar, but very different sound than you’d expect it to make. It turns out that mushrooms are especially noisy little dudes.

The Voice in Your Head

The Voice in Your Head

(PG-13: Language) Writer/Director Graham Parkes’ comedic short film follows a man struggling with self-doubt, and a mysterious persona that continues to beat him down at every turn. But is this guy a figment of his imagination, or can everyone hear the stuff he’s saying?

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Wandaland

Wandaland

Richard Noble’s superbly executed short film tells the story of a fictitious tycoon who hopes to build a theme park bearing his name, but whose obsessive nature, pride, and constant changes to the park’s design becomes his downfall. The title character clearly draws inspiration from Walt Disney and Howard Hughes.

Dragonfly

Dragonfly

Visual Suspect took advantage of the warped look of a 360º camera lens, and combined it with additional distortion effects to create this beautifully twisted perspective on the world around us. The film was shot in Hong Kong in stunningly crisp 8K resolution.

The Box Assassin

The Box Assassin

What Jeremy Schaefer’s animated short lacks in depth, it makes up for with action and style. The premise is simple, yet sets up some entertaining scenarios. Basically, there’s a mercenary who surprises his targets by hiding and popping out of all sorts of boxes. If cats were assassins, this is how they’d do it.

LP

LP

(PG-13: Language) A loss prevention officer encounters a thief in his store, and finds himself faced with a moral dilemma after realizing he has a past with the shoplifter. Alexander Etseyatse’s powerful short film offers a more human look at crime and law enforcement than the way they’re typical portrayed in TV and movies.

The Talking Tree

The Talking Tree

A man is walking through a park when a tree starts talking to him. He assumes there’s some reason that the wise plant has chosen him, and expects it to reveal some greater meaning. We loved everything about Stefan Hunt’s silly and surreal short film.

Descent

Descent

If you’ve lived with anxiety, you can probably relate to this short film from director Helen Takken, in which a young woman experiences a severe panic that can only be described as the sensation of drowning. The visual metaphor is brilliantly executed, and reminds us to keep an eye on the people around us.

Make Me a Sandwich

Make Me a Sandwich

(PG-13) After years of abuse and humiliation from her horrible husband, a woman has has enough of his demands, and decides to do something about it. This short from Deformed Lunchbox has its share of gross-out moments, and is the perfect bite-sized horror film.

Music & Clowns

Music & Clowns

“He understands how you feel. Probably better than you do.” Director Alex Widdowson’s documentary short film uses animation to tell the story of his brother Jamie, a man with a profound learning disability. It delves into his appreciation for the little things in life, and how his family has adapted to their situation.

Kevin James: Gone Fishin’

Kevin James: Gone Fishin’

“You want Earth? You can just take it.” After a fisherman is abducted by aliens, he explains to his captors how screwed up our planet is and how it’s not really worth their effort. Kevin James‘ short film offers a comedic but occasionally profound look at humans can be simultaneously the worst and the best things ever.

Lost in Motions

Lost in Motions

Fernando Livschitz of Black Sheep Films wows us with another amazing short film. The stop-motion clip was made by capturing live breakdance footage, mapping the frames into outlines, laser cutting each from wood, then layering the 800+ pieces to create a motion effect.

Change Return

Change Return

Filmmaker Robert Findlay transports us to a dystopian underground world where a network of robots and vending machines work together to deliver products and services, and tells the tale of two men who attempt to abuse the system. The sound design by Andrew Findlay really helps to build dramatic tension.

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What Was I Going to Say?

What Was I Going to Say?

An ordinary guy loses his train of thought during a marketing meeting, then slips into a deep funk as he struggles to remember his point. Kevin James‘ and the Kinnane Brothers‘ short film does a great job turning an everyday occurence into something far more dramatic than it should be.

Waffle

Waffle

(PG-13: Language) An awkward and socially-inept woman invites a girlfriend over for a sleepover, but we quickly discover their friendship isn’t real, and things take quite an unexpected turn. Carlyn Hudson’s dark comedy short film could easily be the premise for an episode of Black Mirror.

Fun & Games

Fun & Games

Some of our earliest childhood memories involve colorful Fisher-Price toys with big buttons, spinny parts, and other tactile things to play with. This short animation from NYC creative house Bullpen envisions the evolution of these toys as we grow into adulthood, better representing life, from the mundane to the downright dangerous.

Fork

Fork

(Flashing Lights) A woman takes a walk through a contemporary art gallery, and when she comes across an ordinary fork on display, she imagines the creative potential of the eating utensil and other ordinary objects. Optical Arts’ wild short film is packed with surreal and dynamic CG imagery. Behind the scenes here.

Dirty Machines: The End of History

Dirty Machines: The End of History

(PG-13: Language) Future Garbage presents an excellent short film about a time traveler who visits the exact location and time at which time travel itself was discovered. But will his trip disrupt the fabric of the universe and create a paradox? Written, directed, produced by and starring David Matthew Olson.

Spark

Spark

Matt Colglazier and Charles Benevento’s CG animated short film Spark drops us into a factory where robots do all of the work. After one robot is “retired” by some bullying boss bots, one of its components lives on, and brings joy to the warehouse – at least for a little while.

Memories for Sale

Memories for Sale

When a young man decides to sell his dad’s old taxi cab, he finds himself awash in memories both good and bad of his late father. Manu Lopez’s animated short film definitely tugs at the heartstrings with its emotional story and expressive character design.

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A Mind Sang

A Mind Sang

Animator and illustrator Vier Nev describes A Mind Sang as “a short film about perception, rebirth and transformation.” But it’s also a wonderful exploration of optical illusions and the phenomenon known as Pareidolia, or humans’ tendency to see faces and other body features in places where they aren’t.

B is for Ben

B is for Ben

After landing on a deserted planet, an astronaut finds himself stuck on the surface with no way back into his spaceship. Rok Andic’s animated short reminds us of the slapstick comedy of Wile E. Coyote and Road Runner, while Rossini’s The Thieving Magpie is the perfect score as Ben attempts to reboard his ship.

Quick Fix

Quick Fix

Too hyper? Too sleepy? Too fat? Too scrawny? Big pharma has got you covered. Chris O’Hara’s animated short film follows the story of one man’s obsession with pills, and reminds us that while some drugs really can be helpful, that becoming too reliant on them can be a slippery slope.

The Runaway Duck

The Runaway Duck

Cats and birds aren’t supposed to get along, but in the world of Aaron’s Animals, resident kitty Prince Michael has been raising a bunch of ducklings. But when one of the fuzzy little guys struggles to be accepted by his brothers, he makes a break for it, and falls in with a bad crowd. Best watched with Closed Captions on.

Rebooted

Rebooted

Phil is a skeleton. He quickly rose to fame on the big screen as a stop-motion superstar. Then, modern effects put him out of business. Michael Shanks’ (aka “timtimfed“) charming short film is a fun blend of live-action, animation, and VFX, and a loving tribute to the great Ray Harryhausen. Behind the scenes here.

Spice Frontier

Spice Frontier

Jalil Sadool & Adam Meyer of Steamroller Studios present a concept pilot for an intriguing animated series. Spice Frontier is a lighthearted and action-packed story about a starship crew on a mission to track down and recover the last remaining Earth spices in an effort to preserve our world’s culinary history.

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