6 Best Short Films Worth Your Time: A Curated Collection!

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Are you ready to join us on the journey through the world of the best short films, where emotions speak louder than words. You will imagine a world where briefness is not comedy’s soul but storytelling’s essence. These short films take us into different universes and offer a reduced experience. From hilarious comedies that tickle our funny bones to heartfelt dramas that drag at our heartstrings, the best short films will delight the minds in just a few minutes.

In the world of tiny tales, where every frame tells a story, short films emerge as powerful whispers of creativity, leaving lasting imprints in our hearts.

As we explore the fusion of narratives, each film becomes a brushstroke, painting emotions on the canvas of our imagination. These films are windows to a different perspective that showcases the beauty of human connections and the complexities of life in snippets. Their simplicity teaches us that sometimes a whisper can be more potent than a shout.

So, let’s embark on this cinematic journey, where the magic of storytelling unfolds in bitesize wonders, proving that great stories don’t always need a marathon to be told.

Meshes of the Afternoon

Release Date (Streaming): Apr 17, 2020
Director:  Maya Deren, Alexander Hammid 
Writer: Maya Deren
Genre: Fantasy
Runtime: 18 minutes 

Maya Deren’s ”Meshes of the Afternoon” is not just an old film; it’s like a cool kid who changes the playground. In a way, this film was one of the most significant in experimental cinema. In 1943, with the release of this film, it was a boom! It shook Hollywood with its innovative approach to filmmaking. Maya Deren’s was like, Hey Hollywood, watch out, ’cause I’m rewriting the rulebook! She speaks a whole new language of film by challenging the traditional portrayals of women. 

She flips the script on how women are portrayed in movies. Instead of being candy for men, the leading lady takes charge, breaking free from the old-school stereotypes. It’s like wandering through a trippy world with a strong dose of women’s empowerment. Think of Alice in Wonderland but with a feminist edge. So, if you are in the mood for a movie that will make you think twice, give ”Meshes of the Afternoon” a spin next time. Remember, you won’t regret it!

Plot

While strolling home, a woman noticed a beautiful flower and picked it up. But accidentally, she dropped her keys. Feeling worn out, she finally made it inside her house and fell into a soft armchair. She fell asleep, and in her dream, a dark, strange presence haunted her, like a ghost that you cannot touch. She was trying to understand it, but it was too difficult.

Suddenly, her home did not feel like home anymore! The house turned into a confusing maze for the lady, and creepy copies of herself started popping up. All things got spooky; a record player kept playing a mysterious tune over and over again, and the phone wouldn’t stop ringing. And there was a bread knife, looking all sharp and dangerous like it wanted to do more than just slice bread. Caught in a strange and scary dream, the woman wants to get out, but it’s like her mind is holding her. 

Fun fact: The movie was chosen for the National Film Registry in 1990, because of its cultural and historical importance.

The Phone Call

Release Date (Streaming): Jan 28, 2015
Director: Mat Kirkby
Writers:James Lucas, Mat Kirkby
Genre: Drama, Mystery & thriller
Runtime: 22 minutes

The Phone Call is an attractive short film that revolves around a single, pivotal conversation. In a busy city, the film presents a tense communication between two people talking about love, loss, and connection. Through the clever use of dialogue and emotive acting, the audience gets sucked into their emotional rollercoaster, from wanting something badly to feeling sad. It’s like you are right with them, feeling every emotion they feel. 

Throughout the story, the audience is hooked to the film as they listen to what the characters say on the phone, waiting anxiously to see what will happen further. The story is simple but strong, and the characters feel like people we know. It makes us think about how complex relationships can be nowadays. Also, the film reminds us that sometimes even a small conversation can have a big impact on our lives. So, watch this movie as by watching you will be swept away by the raw emotion and authenticity of this unforgettable cinematic experience.

Plot

Heather, who works at a helpline center was surprised when Stan called in upset. He hinted a problem bothering him for two years but did not say much about it. When he mentioned taking pills Heather got worried about him and wanted to get him help. But on the other side, Stan just wanted her support before he died.  

Heather tried to call for help, like an ambulance, but Stan did not want that. Instead, he just wanted Heather to be there for him, even though they were talking on the phone. It was like he wanted her to support him as he felt really bad and may die because of the pills he took. 

Heather was alone and had to hurry to save Stan before its too late. She listened to their talk very carefully to find clues about where he was. She felt a mixture of strong feelings and excitement which was unexpected for her usual quiet job.

Fun Fact: Jim Broadbent never appeared on screen, but he was on set and dressed in character.

Wallace and Gromit: A Close Shave

 Release Date (DVD): Dec 4, 2007
Director: Nick Park 
Writer: Bob Baker, Nick Park
Genre: Comedy, Adventure, Animation
Runtime: 30 minutes 

Wallace and Gromit: A Close Shave is an inventive stop-motion animation and hilarious film that is as charming as it is clever. The brilliant minds of Aardman and Nick Park create the film. It is famous for its quirky characters, pun-filled humor, and impeccable attention. The special factor? The film has gained specialty for its mixture of funny slapstick humor with sweet moments that warm the audience’s hearts. The main characters are Wallace who loves cheese and inventing things, and his smart dog Gromit. 

Nick Park, the creator behind the film, is good at telling funny stories. His quality of imagination is limitless and you can see it in every part of the film. It’s a fun adventure with lots of laughs. So, get some cheese, and let’s enjoy the ride with these awesome characters!

Plot

In the film, Wallace and his smart dog are the main characters. Wallace falls for charming Wendolene, who owns a wool shop. Things get messy when Preston and his robot dog Shaun start stealing sheep, which results in chaos and trouble in the town. When Groomit finds that his friends are in danger due to the sheep rustler’s mischief, he uses his smarts and gadgets to rescue them from a close shave. Throughout their journey, both Wallace and Gromit while solving the mystery encounter funny situations, lots of antics involving sheep, and scary moments. The story is full of jokes, cheese, and warmth.

Fun Fact: The charm and style of the film came from stop-motion animation, where models are moved bit by bit to create motion 

The Big Shave

Release Date: Dec 29, 1967 
Director: Martin Scorsese
Writer: Martin Scorsese
Genre: Drama, Horror, War
Runtime: 30 minutes 

In the short film The Big Shave by Martin Scorsese, the entire action unfolds within a teeny tiny bathroom. Despite having a simple setting, Scorsese creates something new and memorable that makes people think. It’s like he is saying ”Look what I can do with just a little space and imagination”. In such a small space, the camera captures every little detail and the scary stuff happening as the young man shaves. So, you feel like you are right there with him, noticing every aspect closely. Scorsese has used fast camera changes, so the audience is always seeing something new. This keeps you on your toes, not giving you a break to relax. 

Some people feel it is a tough challenge, while others laugh at its dark jokes. In just six minutes the film shows how people sometimes may harm themselves, either personally or in big conflicts. It’s like a tiny movie with a big and serious message to all.

Plot

In this short film, a guy is ready to tackle his facial fuzz in a super sleek bathroom. He is about that clean and shiny vibe, but as he gets to shaving a sudden change happens. Instead of stopping as smooth, he goes on a wild shaving. And then? He ends up turning his face into a fountain of blood. The perfect bathroom is now covered with blood. The shaving session also becomes a metaphor for the Vietnam War, where instead of having cleanliness and order there was chaos and blood everywhere. It’s like going from a close shave to a close call.

Fun Fact: Scorsese saw this film as a reflection on the Vietnam War’s impact. He even thought to end it with real footage from the war.

Six Shooter

Release Date: February 2005
Genre: Comedy, Drama
Director: Martin McDonagh
Writer: Martin McDonagh
Runtime: 27 minutes 

In 2004 Martin McDonagh made a short film Six Shooter. The film is like a small treasure chest filled with interesting people, family problems, serious talks, and even a cow exploding. It’s only 27 minutes long but has a lot going on. McDonagh is good at telling stories and this film shows off his talent. It’s like a sneak peek of all the cool stuff he will do later. 

Brendan Gleeson and Rúaidhrí Conroy, star in the film take the audience on a crazy adventure full of jokes and strange moments. Such type of storytelling got McDonagh nominated for an Oscar. This short film paved the way for his coming success. 

So, get ready for a crazy journey through McDonagh’s unique world. Even though it is a short film, it won a big award in Hollywood. 

Plot

At the hospital, Donnelly learns that his wife has died. He feels very sad and goes to see her once more. He puts a picture of their pet rabbit in her hands. Boarding the early train to Dublin, he finds himself seated across from a lively young man, who looks a bit quirky. Donnelly realizes that they all are going through something tough, they have lost someone they care about. So, even though the guy seems a bit off, he understands their shared grief connects them. 

As the miles pass, the man gives Donnelly a gift to help him feel better after his wife passed away. It’s surprising how grief can bring people together, even strangers.

Fun Fact: The movie was shot on the actual train during daytime only as it had to be cleaned for evening passengers.

The New Tenants 

Release Date: 19 February 2009
Director: Joachim Back
Writer: Anders Thomas Jensen, David Rakoff
Genre: Comedy, crime, drama
Runtime: 21 minutes 

The New Tenants is a refreshing short film that packs a punch with its unpredictable plot twists and quirky characters. In a shabby apartment, two odd new neighbors shake things up with their strange behavior and make life unexpectedly lively for people around. The film is all about friendship, accepting others, and finding surprising connections in unexpected places.

With its charming performance and witty dialogue this film is delightful from start to end. Joachim Back directed this movie in such a way that it showcases inventive storytelling and a unique visual style that leaves a lasting impression.

Plot

A gay couple finds themselves in a cyclone of chaos in their new apartment. Just as they sit down for dinner, their downstairs neighbor drops a bombshell: their apartment was the site of a recent triple murder. As they try to process the shocking news, a colorful cast storms in. Jan, swinging between anger and tears, suspects his wife cheated with the old tenant. A scary drug dealer Zelko blames the dead guy for stealing his drugs. Then Jan’s wife Irene shows up unexpectedly. With each visitor, the couple’s evening sparkles into a darkly comedic turmoil of suspicion and intrigue.

Fun Fact: It was the final film of Helen Hanft.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Do short films receive as much praise as feature-length films?
Short films usually don’t receive as much praise as feature-length films due to their shorter runtime and limited distribution channels. However, they can gain recognition through film festivals, online platforms, and dedicated screenings. Quality storytelling and unique viewpoints can help them stand out despite their length.
How can aspiring filmmakers get their short films noticed by audiences or festivals?
To get noticed, aspiring filmmakers can filter their short films at local and international film festivals. Sharing on platforms like YouTube or Vimeo expands audience reach. Actively participating in film communities, networking, and promoting through social media boosts visibility, attracting more attention to their work.

Conclusion

As we conclude our journey, it’s evident that short films go beyond being mere precursors to longer productions; they stand as an art form on their own. Within a brief period, these films possess the ability to evoke emotions, ignite conversations, and create a lasting impression on those who watch them.

After watching a range of interesting short films across different genres, it’s clear that each one has its special charm and storytelling skill. However, among the plethora of remarkable creations, The Big Shave stands as one of the best movies according to us. In just a few minutes the film provides a big message. It has themes like horror which will surely make you love the film.

Note: “Great storytelling knows no bounds, and short films prove that big tales can come in small packages.”

So, whether you’re a seasoned filmaholic or just discovering the magic of short films, this journey has inspired you to seek out more stories, support emerging filmmakers, and never undervalue the power of briefness in storytelling. After all, as these short films have shown us, sometimes the most profound messages come in the smallest packages.

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