Soft by Simon Ellis (2007) (UK) (14m)

Simon Ellis won the International Short Filmmaking Award at Sundance and was nominated for a BAFTA in 2008 with his great short film, Soft. It is the gritty story of a son and father tormented by a gang of 'happy-slapping' youths, but with neither apparently being brave enough to fight back. Simon Ellis went on to make the feature film, Dogging: A Love Story, in 2009 but scored less success with this film.

High Maintenance by Philip Van (2006) (US/Germany) (9m)

A science-fiction short film and Sundance winner with a subtle A.I. feel to it, High Maintenance was written by Scot Simon Biggs and directed by American Philip Van, but produced in Germany. Van says, 'I aimed to make a film about the future but emblematic of our era' and thus we find an attractive middle-class couple at dinner, but with the woman failing to get the romantic responses she wants from her 'man'... could I put this on my romance page?

High Maintenance

The Natural Route by Àlex Pastor (2004) (Spain) (11m)

You may have to watch The Natural Route (Larutanatural) a couple of times to truly appreciate it - it certainly took me a little while to work out what was going on! With writing partner Martí Roca, Alex Pastor has created a beautiful film with a heart. It is a little like The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button, the F. Scott Fitzgerald short story turned into a 2008 feature film. It won at the 2006 Sundance Film Festival and Pastor has since made two thriller feature films.

Natural Route

Butterfly of Love by Nicolas Provost (2003) (4m) (Belgium) *

I will tell anyone who will listen that Kurosawa was the best director there ever was (making only one not great film). Most of Hollywood is indebted to him on some level. So imagine my delight that Belgian filmmaker Nicolas Provost created this mesmerising, reflective montage of Kurosawa's work, Papillon d'Armour (Butterfly of Love), which won an honourable mention at the 2004 Sundance Flim Festival. It falls into the category of experimental but is mesmerising!

Butterfly of Love

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