Six Shooter had been nominated for the BAFTA short film award in 2005 before winning the Acedemy Award for Best Short Film in 2006. Six Shooter, a black comedy, finds Brendon Gleeson returning home after his wife has died in hospital. However, he is not the only one returning from the hospital today and a cocky Rúaidhrí Conroy is about turn the train ride into a comic tragedy.
Wasp, starring Natalie Press (My Summer Of Love) and Danny Dyer, follows a caring but wayward single mother as she struggles to care for her kids while also going out to meet a man she fancies. Andrea Arnold, from the Home Counties of England, began life as an actress before moving behind the camera and has made several features, including Red Road and the critically acclaimed Fish Tank.
The Academy has been rewarding longer short films for most of the last decade, and Two Soldiers is an extreme example. However, it is to its credit that it does not feel particularly long. Set during WWII, it is a touching account of a young boy who wants to join his brother in the "war at Pearl Harbour". It's very American (was 9/11 a factor in its win?) but a great performance by Ron Perlman (aka Hellboy) makes you more likely to cry than vomit by the end.
Written by Johan Verschueren, Gridlock (Fait d'hiver) is a perfect short film. It was oscar nominated in 2003, but I wanted to show it to you here because I like it so much. It tells the story of a businessman stuck in traffic (gridlock), who calls home only to be told by his little girl that mummy is in the bedroom with 'Uncle Wim'. His little girl carries out his instructions with amusing and tragic consequences.