Suburbia by Antonio Orena-Barlin (2010) (Aus) (15m) *

Suburbia, written and directed by Antonio Oreña-Barlin, is a great short film from Australia, although it seems to owe a lot to a scene from the feature film Elephant by Gus Van Sant, about a mass high-school shooting. In Suburbia, also inspired by a real event, it is a normal weekday when a man and his girlfriend are visiting a florists. However, when the man thinks he hears shots being fired, he cannot help but seek to find the cause.


Checkpoint by Ben Phelps (2006) (Australia) (11m) 15 Certificate

Written and directed by Ben Phelps, who also made Nice Shootin' Cowboy, Checkpoint makes use of the vastness of the Australian outback. A husband and wife are driving along a deserted road with their teenage daughter when they are stopped by three soldiers. They have entered a restricted zone and the soldiers - threatening and racist - are unwilling to let them turn around. As with thrillers such as The Hills Have Eyes the seclusion is part of the problem.

Signs by Patrick Hughes (2008) (Australia) (12m)

A fine example of a romantic short film, Signs was brought to the screen by Australian filmmaker Patrick Hughes with writing credits including Karl Fleet and Nick Worthington. It is a universal story (universally liked) about a guy and a girl working in opposite office blocks and therefore relient on signs to pursue their coy courtship. Hughes' next project was the 2010 feature film Red Hill.


Bat Eyes by Damien Power (Australia) (2012) (10m)

Inspired by the poetry of the Irish poet W. B. Yeats, Bat Eyes is a beautifully shot tale of young love and from Australia. Written by Jessica Bellamy and directed by Damien Power, Bat Eyes could be classed as a coming-of-age drama but is very subtle. It stands out because of the cinematography and the acting, both of which are exceptional. It begins with an unkown man having an eye test that laves him recalling a romance from his school days.

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