"Short films are not inferior, just different. I think the short gives a freedom to film-makers. What's appealing is that you don't have as much responsibility for storytelling and plot. They can be more like a portrait, or a poem." - Jane Campion (director of 'The Piano', 'In the cut' and lots of short films)
BSFF believes in short films! Recognizing the important role shorts have in cinema, storytelling, and culture, BSFF wants to help empower the next generation of artists. The Boston Short Film Festival is an annual event showcasing shorts films with an edge. The BSFF focuses on the unconventional, the unusual, the underground, the intuitive, the innovative, the minimalistic and the true artists of our time. Based in Boston/Somerville (MA, US) the festival aims to screen up to 100 short films. All screenings will take place in the MicroCinema theatre at the Somerville Theatre.
The festival discovers, supports and develops new talent in filmmaking, providing a platform for emerging and established filmmakers from around the world, and an unique focus on Boston based filmmakers. Connecting industry and audiences, the festival celebrates the creativity, diversity and impact of short film. There will be unmissable evening screenings where audiences can watch the best new short films from the hottest new talent, and opportunities to network with the industry. So whether you are a filmmaker looking to launch or develop your career, an Industry professional wanting to stay ahead of the game or a film lover wanting to soak up the festival atmosphere by watching great films, come along and feast your eyes.
BSFF believes in short films! Recognizing the important role shorts have in cinema, storytelling, and culture, BSFF wants to help empower the next generation of artists. The Boston Short Film Festival is an annual event showcasing shorts films with an edge.
We accept short films up to 55 minutes: drama, experimental, animation, documentary, ... Go to our Filmfreeway listing to enter your film.
The Boston Short Film Festival accept all forms and genres. All non-English language films must be subtitled in English. Entry does not guarantee acceptance into the festival. Submissions WILL NOT be returned. We also accept submissions that have premiered elsewhere and that may have distribution agreements already in place. However, TV, theatrical, online video, other festival, or other distribution outlets that run concurrently or in the same month of the festival may not be eligible for screening. Rough cuts and incomplete projects are not accepted. Multiple entries are allowed, however a separate entry form must be submitted for each. The festival has the capability to screen BluRay and DVD.
EXHIBITION & SCREENING
Screenings are scheduled during the Festival at the discretion of the Boston Short Film Festival. Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the published schedule, Boston Short Film Festival reserves the right to make changes at any time for any reason. Boston Short Film Festival will not be liable for any costs claimed as a result of a change in scheduling. No film may be withdrawn from the festival program after its selection. If chosen as an official selection, Boston Short Film Festival is granted the permission to exhibit the film at the 2016 Boston Short Film Festival and all associated screenings. Location and timing of any screenings of the film shall be the sole decision of the organizers of the Boston Short Film Festival. Filmmakers will be solely responsible for all costs resulting from the submission of the film to the Festival including but not limited to postage or insurance of the film, and expenses of your staff or any representatives of the film. Producer will indemnify the organisers of the Festival against all claims, demands, costs, damages, expenses (including legal fees), proceedings and losses resulting from the screening of the film at the Festival or from claims by any third parties.
LOSS OR DAMAGE
Although every precaution will be taken to prevent loss or damage to materials while in the possession of the festival, The Boston Short Film Festival is not responsible should any materials be damaged while in transit to or from, or while in the possession of the festival.
The filmmaker holds the Boston Short Film Festival, its management, juries, subsidiaries, agents, sponsors, affiliates, and etc. harmless from any and all claims of liability resulting from entry. The filmmaker certifies to have full rights. Producer will indemnify the organisers of the Festival against all claims, demands, costs, damages, expenses (including legal fees), proceedings and losses resulting from the screening of the film at the Festival or from claims by any third parties.
Out of the official selections, an international jury will select one winner in each category (Narrative short, Documentary short...). One film will be labeled as 'best of the fest' and win the Boston Eagle Award. The value of the Boston Eagle Award equals 500 US dollar worth of submission fees with partner festivals (Venice Film Week, Hong Kong Arthouse Film Fesival, Toronto Film Week, Verona International Film Festival ...).
Boston Eagle Award (value 500 US dollar)
Best Narrative Short Film
Best Documentary Short Film
Best Animated Short Film
Best Underground short Film
Best Experimental short Film
We also accept submissions that have premiered elsewhere and that may have distribution agreements already in place. However, TV, theatrical, online video, other festival, or other distribution outlets that run concurrently or in the same month of the festival may not be eligible for screening.
All screenings will take place in the MicroCinema theatre at the Somerville Theatre.
The Boston Short Film Festival will screen during 5 days at the Somerville Theatre, 55 Davis Square, Somerville, MA 02144. Seating for films is available on a first-come, first-served basis. Admission is free of charge.
Monday, July 8 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Monday, July 9 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Monday, July 10 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Monday, July 11 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Monday, July 12 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Monday, July 8 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Fake News (Greece) by Dimitris Katsimiris
A YouTuber and her partner are planning to direct the raping of a girl by two black guys. Their goal is to get more subscribers on their YouTube channel. However, on the day of the shooting things don’t go as planned.
Yasmina (France) by Ali Esmili, Claire Cahen
Yasmina is a 15-years-old teenager who is passionate about soccer and practices with the team FC SAINT ETIENNE. Originally from Morocco, she is in an irregular situation in France, with her father and his French partner. One evening when she returns from a training, she sees her father being arrested before her own eyes.
Beefcakes (United States) by Andrew Madsen Jasperson
He may just be the office manager of a male stripper agency, but Thad has big dreams of following in his brother's footsteps. To make that dream come true though, he's going to need some help.
Salt Water (United States) by Abe Abraham
Dance-film set to the seismographic recordings of the earth's vibrations.
The Boy Who Cried (United States) by Eric Patterson, Dan Hale
Despite the cold, the boy walked into the woods. Perhaps he had heard a sound, but no one could ask, as the boy could not be found.
Body Echo (United Kingdom) by Ali Aschman
A woman discovers her own fractured self in the room next door. Body Echo expresses psychological fragility and fragmentation of identity.
The City of the Future (United Kingdom) by Marcos Mereles
Prove it (Canada) by Geneviève Dunn, Carol-Anne Vallée
Tonight, they love each other like crazy.
Retrieval (United States) by Brady Morell
When the younger of two brothers has his jacket stolen, their mom sends the eldest brother out to get it back. But as time passes, the mom and youngest son begin to wonder if he'll return at all.
Nap With Roger - Paris (United States) by Victor Mignatti
In the concierge’s rooms behind Cafe’ de Flore, Roger the Cat naps and dreams of Dalida, Piaf and Aznavour. An invitation to repose. Relax. You deserve it. Starring Roger the Cat.
Swan Song (Australia) by Blythe Ashton
Swan Song is a musical comedy about Sarah, a young woman with an odd “affliction” - a condition that causes her to sing her thoughts and feelings out loud. Sarah has had enough. Today is the day she’s going to kill herself and what better way to end it all then in song.
Last Meal (United States) by Major Dorfman
A corrections officer spills a death row inmate's last meal.
Impact Reel (9 for Gil) (United States) by Alex Sarabi-Daunais, Homa Sarabi-Daunais
Optical Printed 16mm film. Ink animation, Xray (digitized) A film memorial for my cousin consisting of images of athletics and X-ray. He was a man who loved Boston sports and who had many health problems. The linkage between impact sports and ill health is sadly an overshadowed by the entertainment of the games.
A Prince Is Not Respected In His Hometown (United States) by Bryan Sih
A black man in a hoodie mutters to himself on an overpass, causing passerbys concern. Is this a harmful stereotype or a well-rehearsed monologue? The hooded figure, Ben, grapples with being typecast in the limited roles offered to African Americans while embracing his roots as a Nigerian immigrant. This inner search for an authentic identity comes to a head when Stephanie, a well-meaning friend, gives unsolicited advice for his next audition.
Diva & Astro (United States) by Angel Barroeta
A streetwise posse idly roams the evening in the hood they call home. Diva and Astro follow parallel paths in real time, hurtling irrevocably toward the consequences of the habits they find hardest to overcome.
Tuesday, July 9 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Appocundria (Italy) by Mino Capuano
A huge house surrounded by nature was the childhood home of three brothers, Diego, Desio and Mimmo. The three brothers will be forced to face each other, in order to sell their old house and this will severely test their difficult relationship. After a night together in their childhood house, which is full of memorabilia, the three will rediscover some values which they thought they have lost while growing up and apart from each other.
My name is Mohamed and Raghad, We don't exist here anymore (Australia) by Ali Mousawi
A one shot, twelve-minute film about a day in the life of an Iranian- Ahwazi asylum seeker family, surviving in Australia. Mohamed is ten years old. Raghad, his sister, is eleven. They are Ahwazi asylum seekers, living with their father in Liverpool, Sydney.
Miss Park Project #1 (Korea) by Yongchu SUH
Miss Park Project #1 is a 3-channel animated work that summon the women from old, faded photographs of modern Korean history to the present day. It is a kind of ritual for the myriad lives of women that cannot be singularly symbolized and defined.
023_GRETA_S (Germany) by Annika Birgel
A young actress' audition quickly spirals out of control, turning into an intimate and manipulative interrogation. As she fights to stand her ground, one pressing question will remain: how far will she go to get the role? 023_GRETA_S is a disquieting drama about the abuse of power in the film industry.
Passage (Canada) by Henry Colin
Friendship. Life. Loss. Tragedy. The story of brothers Tim and Tyler, growing up in the coastal community of Eastern Passage, as told through the eyes of their friend Luke.
Jessica Liggero | Boxer x Artist (United States) by Anna Remus
Massachusetts native Jessica Liggero shares her story as a competitive amateur boxer and visual artist.
On the Other Shore (United States) by Gus Reed
A young man on a visit to his childhood home on Cape Cod wakes up to find his long-absent sister has returned.
Shahkboy (United States) by Jake Peckar
Shahkboy is a typical Boston high school kid, doing drugs and getting busted for graffiti. Oh, and he's half shark. This film was made during my senior year at MassArt as my animation degree project.
Line Of Duty (India) by Mayank Malhotra
A Young recruit of the Indian army posted at a remote bunker, is asked to forego his principals of humanity against the rigid border regulations. With a natural calamity at hand, are all regulations applicable? Inspired by True events.
Wednesday, July 10 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Dispersion (Switzerland) by Basile Vuillemin
A man uses an automated funeral homes company to bury his mother.
Masha and Dasha Two Hearts in one (United Kingdom) by Diana Taylor
Juliet Butler qualified with a degree in Russian. In 1982 she became a journalist in Moscow. She met the world's most extreme siamese twins Masha and Dasha Krivoshlyapova. Juliet discovered that the twins had been used for human experiments by the russian physiologist Anokhin and institutionalised all their lives. Juliet tells the incredible story of the twins who were hidden away from society for 50 years.
Rhizoma (Belgium) by Santiago Pérez Rodríguez
Hounds and transmission towers. Frequencies of flesh and electric howls. A disturbing atmosphere where the animal, the organic and the industrial blend.
Granny Knows Best (United Kingdom) by Stephan Nielsen
A Tinder-addicted bachelor takes relationship advice from his irascible German grandma and her toy boy boyfriend with hilarious results.
Diary 2013-2018 (United States) by Soyeon Kim
Abstract and visual expressions of a personal diary
Waiting for Jupiter (France) by Agathe Riedinger
Liane, a 21-year-old girl, has just learnt that she was cast to be part of a reality TV show. Certain that her life will finally start, she burns everything surrounding her to embrace this long-awaited shake-up.
Pain is Mine (Australia) by Farshid Akhlaghi
One day, One room, One take. After her spinal surgery, she was always in pain, intense pain, unendurable pain. Painkillers have been her refuge for a long time, but one day, she decided to stop.
Limbs (United States) by Bryce Patingre
A runner attempts to beat his personal best on a training run. But he becomes extremely aware of his own mortal limits when he must help a fellow runner who is randomly struck by a falling tree branch and at risk of dying.
Onikuma (Italy) by Alessia Cecchet
Onikuma is Japanese yokai, a demon bear known for chasing horses. Surrounded by a foreign landscape, two women will understand that demons can come in different forms.
Paperboy 2018 (United States) by Fernando Alfonso
The year is 2018 and the newspaper industry is under siege financially and politically. The life of a paperboy has become complicated, especially in Washington, D.C.
Detached (United States) by Frances Love
Lines warp and grids distort, a mother and daughter are brought together.
Consolar (United States) by Susan DeLeo
A short poetic piece shot on Super 8mm film inspired from a line of a traditional Spanish folksong "Asturiana." "To see if it would console me, I drew near."
2nd class (Sweden) by Jimmy Olsson
charlotte is the new 2nd class teacher and when she is out with her friends she gets attacked by a nazi. After the hospital when she gets back to her school she discovers that one of her students is the son of that nazi.
Thursday, July 11 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Elisa (Germany) by Kristina Kean Shtubert
'Elisa' portrays the claustrophobic and extremely painful relationship between nine year old Elisa and her mother. At night, Elisa scratches herself raw. This drives her mother insane. However rather than to see this as a sign that something is wrong, she demands Elisa stop. Does the mother's anger provoke further scratching, or is it the other way around? The little family begins to break apart and Elisa's mother clumsily attempts to keep their life in order, but it has gotten out of control. An undefinable force is splitting them apart.
The Shepherd (Norway) by Brwa Vahabpour
While driving to a wedding, a Kurdish family hits a wild animal. The father, Aram, is forced to decide whether he should kill the animal or attempt to rescue it. Later it becomes clear how Aram struggles to find a place both in his new country as well as within his own family.
Year of the robot (France) by Yves Gellie
This film explores the desire and wishes humans may have to form a personal daily relationship with a robot. is a series of archives detailing the first contacts and dialogs with a humanoid robot, equipped with artificial autonomy and humans. It involves elderly people sometimes afflicted with Alzheimer's or dementia, or young adults with autism or neurological problems. Once past the surprise phase and aware of the artificial nature of the robot's functioning, the residents try, despite everything,to forge bonds with it. Raise your arms above your head.
Comments (Germany) by Jannis Alexander Kiefer
“Comments” casts a glance at the German digital legacy of our society and is devoted to digital words: Real commentary from YouTube is interpreted and presented afresh in different chapters. (Amateur) actors embody the protagonists of the virtual conversations and give them human form thanks to the semi-documentary style adopted. This brings the true, yet bodiless events into a reality that the camera can then cover.
- Saw/Ate Sad Bird (United States) by Lauren Flinner
The woman in Saw/Ate Sad Bird is afraid to leave her house. She wonders about the neighbors, plays on the couch with her cat, remembers being at a party, folds laundry, has a panic attack, sinks through the floor and dreams about ducks and wolves. She is rescued by her cat, who reminds her that she is still on the couch.
Downhill (United States) by Erica Moriconi
Four plagued neighbors resort to self destruction when their decaying apartment intends to drag its residents down with it.
CMFRT_SYSTMS (United Statesà) by LowRes Wünderbred
On the way to his car, a man encounters what has become of a high school friend.
Taste the Spider (United States) by Brian Dorrington Jr.
A young couple’s relationship is poisoned when a spider invades their home.
I'm No Holiday (United States) by Rick Gomez
A comical portrait of world renowned fireworks photographer, Lawrence Sendass (Steve Zahn), as he attempts to reframe his work through the memory of lost love.
Friday, July 12 - 2019, 8PM-10PM
Plato's Republic: Book I (Canada) by Erik Anderson
The first adaptation of Plato's Republic, Book I. Scott (Socrates) and Garry (Glaucon) are accosted by a group of men including Paul (Polemarchus) and Theo (Thrasymachus), who bid them to come to Paul’s father’s house. There, Scott becomes engaged in a debate about the nature of Justice, including with Paul’s father Cliff (Cephalus). While Scott proves his ability to debunk the others’ arguments, the nature of Justice itself proves elusive...
Shooting Crows (Switzerland) by Christine Hürzeler
A park in the fog. Crows flap and caw in the sky. A homeless man sleeps between the trees. Now and then a crow is shot: as a deterrent. The crows rally after every shot. A woman disappears. The police gather evidence. What is really going on? Are reality and imagination slowly blurring?
Carro (United States) by Gustavo Rosa
An undocumented Brazilian immigrant living in the Boston area decides to buy a car in an effort to better his life before returning home.
Love (Canada) by Benoit Ouellet
The friendship between Sam and Mathieu ends.
Dear Pope Francis (United States) by Gauri Adelkar
When her best friend is taken away during an immigration raid on the day of the Pope's visit to their city, Adriana decides to take matters into her own hands.
Personal Cuts / Hands (United States) by Nicole Prutsch
In "Personal Cuts / Hands" a scientist's hands in latex gloves confront the camera. Using scissors, one hand cuts one hole after another into the glove of the other hand, thereby fully destructing the glove and releasing the naked hand.
Francis (United States)à by Katelyn Costello
An animation to found audio of an interview with Francis Bacon from ubu.com/sound.
Tungrus (India) by Rishi Chandna
Tungrus (pronounced: toongroos) is a short documentary that observes a week in the peculiar lives of a middle-class suburban Mumbai household. What was once a home like a million others in the city, turns topsy-turvy when the eccentric patriarch brings home a baby chick for his cats to play with, much to the exasperation of his family. What follows is an alternatingly absurd, nerve-jangling and heart-warming set of accounts about the latest addition, from each member of the household. The once adorable chick has survived his early days and grown into a hell-raising, willful rooster – forever taking up a touch too much of their space, defecating on their spotless floors, bullying their cats, crowing at ungodly hours, and generally making life in the already-crowded apartment unlivable. The film follows the thoughts of each person to their inevitable conclusion – the rooster’s got to go. And as his fate hangs in the balance, the family debates the question that lingers in the air: should he be given the gift of life, or served for dinner?