With the production of short films around the globe exploding due to their currency as “content” for online and mobile viewing, the Palm Springs International Short Film Festival is emerging as one of the best. The event, which ended on Monday, announced its award winner. Winning the Best of Festival Award, which includes a $2000 cash prize and a bunch of nifty goods and services, was BAHIYA & MAHMOUD, a dramatic portrait of an aging bickering couple, by Jordanian filmmaker Zaid Abu Hamdan. The Panavision Grand Jury Award, which includes a camera package valued at $60,000, was won by Australian director Elizabeth Tadic for UMOJA: NO MEN ALLOWED, about a tribe of aboriginal women who set up an all-female community. Other key awards included the Future Filmmaker Award to Japanese actress-turned-director Mitsuyo Miyazaki Tsuyako; and Audience Awards to DIK (Christopher Stollery, Australia), JOHNNY & LYMAN: A LIFE TOGETHER (Paul Detwiler and Michael Chen, USA) and THE FANTASTIC FLYING BOOKS (Morris Lessmore, USA).
Inherit the Viper (Anthony Jerjen, 2019) 2½ out of 4 stars. It’s a tale focused around a topic as old as time itself: family. And yet, Anthony Jerjen’s debut film Inherit the Viper doesn’t feel traditional at all. It is a … Continue reading
A Hidden Life (Terrence Malick, 2019) 1 out of 4 stars. Once upon a time, I admired the work of Terrence Malick. His debut feature, the 1973 Badlands, remains one of my favorite films of all time, its combination of … Continue reading
63 Up (Michael Apted, 2019) 3 out of 4 stars. Humans don’t tend to be a reflective species. The long-running British documentary Up series, however, forces its subjects to be exactly that, catching up with its several subjects every seven … Continue reading
Midnight Family (Luke Lorentzen, 2019) 4 out of 4 stars. Imagine a country with a terrible national health-care infrastructure and little regulation over the ways that desperate citizens seek to not only do business, but survive. No, it’s not the … Continue reading