War shorts cover a broad range. But whether based upon real or fictional conflict they should say something about man's inability to live peacefully.

Coward by David Roddham (2012) (UK) (28m)

Coward focuses on the treatment of WWI soldiers suffering from what would now be called shell-shock. It follows two Northern Irish cousins who join the British Army to fight on the Western Front, where the reality of trench warfare leads instead to ignomony. Coward appears to have had a budget to die for, with a group of experienced filmmakers on board. It was executive produced by Ruairi Robinson, who made The Silent City. Writing credits include Terry Donnelly, Steve Handley and Mark O'Halloran.

Wrong Game

Toyland by Jochen Freydank (2007) (Germany) (13m)

The idea of another Holocaust film, even a short, is not necessarily enthralling. But you will have a lump in the back of your throat by the end of Oscar-winning Toyland (Spielzeugland). Set in 1942, and co-written with Johann Bunners, Toyland is the name a German mother invents when her son asks where his Jewish neighbours are going. An ending reminiscent of Sophie's Choice makes it all worthwhile. Click on captions to bring up subtitles.


Mis-drop by Ferend Peek (2013) (New Zealand) (14m)

The brilliant sci-fi short film Mis-drop by Ferend Peek was a finalist in the 7th FILMSshort competition. Set some 300 years in the future, It is mainly told with one shot, which shows a new recruit taking part in his first "drop". His team are dropping from a spaceship onto an alien world they are colonising and mining. It is being watched back by a forensic accountant, who has to decide whether what went wrong was the fault of the rookie or not.


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