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Film Of The Week: Foxed!

Foxed! by James Stewart (2013) (Canada) (4m)

Made as a proof-of-concept for a feature film, Foxed! is one of our most popular competition winners, with nearly a million views on the YT channel. It tells the story of Emily, a little girl who has been kidnapped by evil foxes and forced to work in an underground mine. When she sees a chance to escape, she makes a run for it. But what horrors await her when she reaches home?

House on Little Cubes

WOW by Chic & Artistic (2016) (France) (5m) *

A previous competition finalist, the dialogue-free WOW is a palindromic film; meaning that it is the same backwards as it is forwards. This is an interesting conceit in a short film, for when certain scenes are played backwards, their meanings appears to be reversed too. So in a love story, a beginning becomes an ending, a connection becomes a separation.

Office Kingdom by Bertolucci et al (2014) (Italy) (7m)

Made by students at Italy's National School of Cinema, Office Kingdom showcased a team of animators ready to take on the world - like the central character in their film. It tells the story of a customer-facing civil service clerk who is obliged to get a document stamped by a stroppy member of the public. What this difficult customer could not know is that getting a document stamped will be trial of mythical proportions for our well-trained heroine.

The Guilt

Munchausen by Ari Aster (2013) (USA) (17m) *

A beautifully crafted, genre-bending and dialogue-free short written and directed by Ari Aster. It plays like a weepy montage (found in Pixar films like Up) but has a dark, Tim Burton-like heart. This darkness is perhaps given away by the title, as most will be aware of Munchausen syndrome, in which illness is deliberately induced in oneself or another, and thus it is an uncomfortable watch from the beginning as a mother struggles with her son going off to college.

Mister Hollow

The Cat Came Back by Cordell Barker (1988) (Canada) (7m)

The Cat Came Back was nominated for an Oscar in 1989 and is a fond memory from my childhood. Created by Canadian animator Cordell Barker, it is based on an apparently popular campfire song (my knowledge of campfire songs is limited) of the same name, which provides the soundtrack. As with the song, it is the tale of a wildly destructive and unwanted cat that proves difficult to get rid of. It is an enjoyable watch with some lovely comic touches.

Down Home by Engemoen & Moskowitz (2022) (USA) (12m)

A life-affirming doc that makes you think that maybe, just maybe, not all humans are selfish arseholes. Down Home follows some of the campers at Down Home Ranch in Texas, which provides a summer camp for people with learning difficulties that might not otherwise experience such an American rights of passage. Many have Down Syndrome but it is unclear whether that fed into the camp's name - "down-home" is a well-known phrase that refers to small-town Dixie (and thus Texan) Americana.


Ex Creta by Jon Portman (2022) (USA) (5m)

A black comedy focusing on a bored woman who decides a neighbour's unusual dog-walking ritual must mean that he is up to no good and deserves the wrath of like-minded keyboard warriors. Of course, there turns out to be a reason behind his weirdness, and the film is commenting on the tendency of people to jump to conclusions and invite a pile-on in the social media world. It reminds me of the sacking of tennis commentator Doug Adler, who described Venus Williams as employing "guerrilla" tactics.

Small Deaths

The Bloody Olive

The Owl And The Pussycat by Mole Hill (2020) (UK) (4m)

Based on Edward Lear's nonsense poem about two romantically linked animals who go to sea in a pea-green boat and end up dancing in the light of the moon, this one the Short Animation BAFTA in 2021. As the story is 150 years old and I have little knowledge of animation techniques, there is little I can say about the film (or why it was deemed worthy of the BAFTA). The golden colours are nice. There, I said something.

Dark Side Of The Moon by Acim Vasic (2014) (UK/Serbia) (5m)

Another high-concept short from a filmmaker who deserves to be making feature films. Filmed on an iPhone, it is essentially a "lost-footage" thriller short film about a scientist trying to tell the world about a looming catastrophe while being chased by government forces attempting to keep the public in blissful but dangerous ignorance. It's style is deceptively simple, while the acting is superb.


The Gift by Gabriel Robertson (2015) (UK) (13m)

The Gift was long-listed for the 2016 Oscar after its success on the festival circuit. The Gift is an historical drama short about a young boy choosing his 11th birthday present. Will his choice change his life and perhaps the course of musical history? Well, it would have been odd to make a film about an absolute nobody so one can rest assured the boy grows up to be someone of some import. Although essentially a British (Scottish) film, it was shot on location in Tupelo, Mississippi, if that gives you any clue.

Creature Comforts

Films marked * contain no dialogue. Search the entire website below.

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