Independent Shorts Awards

Battledream Chronicles: A New Beginning

Syanna, a young black Caribbean girl, wakes up amnesiac in an Afrofuturistic world where she has been enslaved by the global colonial empire of Mortemonde. Every day, she is forced to collect 500 experience points or XP for her master in the Battledream, a dangerous video game in which players die for real. With a kill switch implanted in her body and her limbs replaced by bionic parts controlled by the master, escape seems impossible. When she is offered a chance to learn in secret how to hack and control the technology used to enslave her, Syanna realizes that not everything is lost. But her master, driven by his lust for wealth and political power, is making the slave conditions harder and harder. And planning a rebellion while fulfilling her slave duty is getting more and more challenging. Will Syanna succeed in regaining her freedom?
Directed by Alain Bidard (France)

Kaun Banega Champion

It is a journey of six naughty fishes to become quiz champion. Three quiz masters probe them with sharp questions over five levels. At each level, one participant is dropped, thus the winner from the fifth level becomes the champion. The tussle between fishes result in fun and encourage kids to face life with a positive mindset.
Directed by Indumitra Bhardwaj (India)

Woodcarving in Dongyang

This short piece offers a glimpse into the daily life of a woodcarving workshop in Dongyang, capital of the long-established craft of woodcarving in China, whose masterpieces are resplendently displayed in the extensive woodcarving museum and trading center in Dongyang. We watch the master craftsman and his apprentices and craftsmen as they work, and chat with them about their lives and future expectations. We discover their feelings of an uncertain future for this incredible craft, maybe an unavoidable consequence of modern life…
Directed by Tracy Wang (China)

Ava

The film follows the main character, Evans, and teenage his daughter, Ava, on their journey in a dystopian world where talking is obsolete and human communication is minimal because it comes at such a high cost.
Directed by Sahvannah Henry (USA)

Allerton

Haunted by visions of his uncle’s murder, a troubled young man seeks revenge on the person that got away with it.
Directed by Austin Hanner and Daniel Lawrence Wilson (USA)

Twalking

“Twalking” is an experimental music video inspired by the figure of Adam. He evolves into a being who talks, walks, changes, renewing himself without ever forgetting what he has been until he clashes with the reality that surrounds him. An inner journey in search of knowledge.
Directed by Lorenzo Gonnelli (Italy)

The EU Secret Service: Fiction or Fact

Although the author Alex Hunter claims that his book ‘Shadows’ is fiction there are several hints that there actually is a European Union Secret Service existing. Interviews with (former) agents support this mystery.
Directed by Dieter-Michael Grohmann (Belgium)

The Girl With the Flute

Emotional intimacy is not everyone’s cup of tea. Some people can deal with sex – as long as only the body is involved, but when it comes to emotions seemingly suppressed very dark secrets surface. Most of the time music can temper the girl’s childhood trauma – but not always. Will her new lover be saved or run into the inevitable?
Directed by Dieter-Michael Grohmann (Austria)

Follow Me

The soul is a vast country. “Follow Me” is solely anchored in this ‘vast country’. Attempting to escape from her inner self-followed by panic attacks as well as quiet moments, the protagonist eventually faces her demons. Afflicted by doubts and quiet desperation she realizes that there is only one way out.
Directed by Dieter-Michael Grohmann (Austria)