BAFTA likes to reward British drama in their awards. Here are some
of the best BAFTA winners and nominees from the last decade or so.

73 Cows by Alex Lockwood (2018) (UK) (15m)

The documentary 73 Cows won the Best Short Film BAFTA in 2019. It tells the story of Jay Wilde, a cattle farmer who finds taking his cows to slaughter to be "soul-destroying" having realised that they are in fact sentient beings. As a vegan, I admire its sentiments but do also wonder why it took him so longer to work out what he is doing is wrong. It is very unusual for a documentary to win the BAFTA. It is certainly well made with some lovely cinematography, and sweet, but why it was considered worthy of the BAFTA is harder to know.

Stone Cars

Room 8

Cowboy Dave by Colin O'Toole (2017) (UK) (25m)

Cowboy Dave won the BAFTA in 2018. Set in a deprived area of Manchester, it sees a teenage wannabe hustler befriend a chain-smoking, verbose drifter called Dave who thought he was destined for musical greatness. When a debt collector arrives with his violent, axe-toting righthand man, it is unclear whether Dave can talk his way out of the debt or talk his way into trouble. As the debt appears to be for only £5, it would seem unlikely that the debt collector would resort to any serious violence.

Standby by Charlotte Regan (2016) (UK) (6m)

Standby was nominated for a BAFTA in 2017. Set entirely in a cramped police car, we follow a new police partnership: Gary and Jenny. Jenny is the rookie. Their relationship evolves over the coming months in a series of short scenes with extra comedy coming from the various criminals handcuffed in the backseat. There is definitely something of Peter Kay's Car Share in this BAFTA-nominated short film.

Argentine Tango
Room 8

Operator by Caroline Bartleet (2015) (UK) (6m)

Set entirely in an emergency call centre, Operator tells the story of one particular call, handled by Laura. Gemma has apparently woken up to discover a fire in her house and her young son, Jamie, is trapped upstairs. Despite Laura asking Gemma to stay downstairs, the latter cannot refrain from trying to save her son. Will Laura be able to keep them safe until the fire engine arrive? No matter the outcome, Laura will have another call to handle straight after.

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