Independent Shorts Awards

Qualm & Quietus

Part character study, part essay film, “Qualm & Quietus” challenges the anxiety with which we view death. The documentary follows Kerry Lynn, a woman who just stepped down from leading a pagan sanctuary. Death has followed Kerry Lynn throughout life, leading her to form a relationship with Hekate: the Titan goddess of the underworld and all things in transition. In facing her mortality with grace and candor, Kerry Lynn allows viewers to see the perfection of impermanence for themselves.
Directed by Phoebe Mussman (USA)

2BR02B

Vonnegut’s story introduces the audience to a world in which society is overpopulated and the United States’ Federal Bureau of Termination (FBT) exists to aid suicide and infanticide in order to maintain population control. The system requires that a person must voluntarily die in order to enable another human to live if born. In particular, the title references Shakespeare’s famous phrase, although it is pronounced “2 B R naught 2 B,” and simultaneously references the assisted suicide hotline dial code linked to the FBT within the context of this story.
We are introduced to characters in a Chicago hospital waiting room and tension is high. One waiting room holds the fate of both an expectant father and the staff awaiting calls from those who have exhausted the delights of this earth and are ready to make way for the next generation. Will the phone calls come before the babies arrive?
Directed by Lucy K Moroukian (USA)

Shtriga

Students interview an eccentric old man who says he can help them uncover truths about a local witch legend. They get more than they bargained for when they come face to face with the witch and are never heard from again.
Directed by Jayde Williams (USA)

Omolara (A Docudrama on Coastal Poverty)

Coastline cities around the world are expected to enjoy a significant level of wealth as they stand out above all else. Akodo, situated on the coastline of Lagos is the ironic story of the silver line.
In this town, we meet a young lady who painstakingly struggles to make a better life for herself, pushing beyond a disconnected spouse and a community determined to destroy them. Broken and weak, she eventually has to defend her most precious asset.
Directed by Esther Kemi Gbadamosi (Nigeria)

Creation

Award-winning poetic experimental short film about the conflicting nature of creation.
Directed by Marcelle Abela (USA)

Kara the Invincible

In a world where superheroes and super villains are sponsored, illegal vigilantes are left with two choices: Stay obscure or double down on the illegal by making bootleg promotional tapes. Kara wants to track down who is making videos for the not-so-super hero Lightning Face, and put an end to their snuff film ways. Only problem is, she isn’t the only ones looking for them…
Directed by Ben Floss (USA)

The Mask I Wear

A man beat down and weathered by social norms is challenged with balancing a conservative family life while coming to terms with his own reality.
Directed by Brett Newton (USA)

12th Floor

The ability that the taxidermist Edgar has in dealing with dead creatures is not the same as he has with the living around him. When his sanity begins to be affected by an insuperable insomnia, the relationship with his wife Beatriz takes a hard blow.
Directed by Pedro Kalli, Renata Moraes and Ingrid Verissimo (Brazil)

Iris

A young woman discovers she has a deep connection with her Grandmother after her Grandmother has passed.
Directed by Jerry J White III (USA)

Toast

Two people are ready to make a toast but they do not know why. What they do know is that they own a dark and evil past and that they try to forget it with champagne.
Directed by Alberto Martín-Aragón (Spain)