This past year has been the year of online film festivals. Thus it is no surprise that San Diego International Film Festival decided to host an online film festival specifically dedicated to short films. All of the films are 30 minutes or less in length. The regular film festival will take place in October, which will showcase longer films and will be 11 days long!

Today I wanted to share with you some of my favorite films that I watched at the ShortsFest. In no particular order…

1. Imelda y Luis (2020)

This tender film is directed by Leonel Chee and follows twin siblings, Imelda and Luis. They have a special bond and have grown up in tough circumstances. But they push through it all and show that nothing can break their sibling bond, not even an unsupportive family and a destructive home life.

The children that play the twins are incredible actors and make the story so compelling and heartfelt. So much story told in under 20 minutes.

2. Eucalyptus (2021)

A remarkable quarantine inspired short that showcases some of the benefits of being alone and having time to reflect and appreciate each individual moment of time. Directed by Nate Riedel, this film reminds us to find the positives in every situation, even if at first there seems like there are none.

3. Mar & Cielo (2021)

The directors, Rocío Huerta & Roberto Zamora, make the climate crisis personal in this beautifully acted and beautifully filmed story that takes place on the coast of Chile. The incredible visuals, accompanied with the emotional backbone of the story, make this film something I will recommend to my friends.

4. Rust (2020)

Mariola Wawrzusiak-Borcz searches for scrap metal that she can weld to form sculptures that comment on people, animals, and our relationship with our surrounding environments. All of the sculptures are mesmerizing to look at, but some of them give you this eery feeling in your stomach because they evoke such deep, profound emotional.

Wawrzusiak-Borcz is an incredible artist whose innovation, resourcefulness, determination, and intelligence inspires me.

5. Georgia (2020)

This heartbreaking story stuck with me long after I finished watching the film. Directed by Jayil Pak, this film follows two parents after they lose their daughter. Their daughter was in the process of creating a new font style and her parents try to pick up where she left off, even though they have a lot to learn.

Georgia focuses on the themes of love, family, and justice. When the public do not take the parents’ demands seriously, they go to whatever lengths they need to make sure their daughter’s story is heard and that justice is served.

Honorable Mentions:

AMYGDALA (2020) directed by Dana Abdessamad and staring Carole Abboud & Yehia Jaber, tells the story of Farid as he starts to experience the feeling of not being in the present moment, leaving Amal to decide what’s the best way to deal with Fadri’s new reality.

THE ROADS MOST TRAVELED (2020) directed by Bill Wisneski, Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist, Don Bartletti, discusses the people he has met and the experiences he has been thrown into throughout his career. He touches on what he has learned, what changed his perspective the most, and what he wants people to know about immigration.

Thanks for being a part of my journey. What’s your favorite short film at the moment?


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