Adding a Dimension to Oscar (Nominated Live Action Shorts, 2011)
It's intriguing when you mustn't tell why a film is good because almost anything you say will spoil some of the freshness that makes it good. “The Confession” and “The Crush” are like that.
“The Confession” focuses on two kids, about age 9, who are being taught in school about the ritual of confessing one's sins. “The Crush” focuses on one kid, about age 9, who is in love with his teacher. All else I'll say is that the kids were cast especially well. Their effectiveness includes a certain lack of the polish and precociousness that commercial films typically demand of their pre-teen professionals.
Having restrained myself from spilling further particulars about either of these offbeat gems, I will let on that these films are only 26 and 15 minutes long. This makes their intriguing freshness more of an unusual opportunity for those who rise to the challenge of seeing non-commercial movie offerings.
Actually, Nevada City is familiar with short form films, what with two major film festivals and arranging yet again to show Oscar nominated shorts at the Nevada Theatre (Sunday, Feb. 20). This set of five contending Live Action Shorts provides a side door entrance to the Academy Awards brouhaha (broadcast Sunday, Feb. 27.)
A third film in this set of Oscar-nominated shorts is easier to blurt about. “God of Love” stars a young man with a face for comedy. His likable dork of a character sings in a small bistro group. For inventive reasons that work in this weird script, he throws bulls eyes on dart boards while he croons. He's in love with the drummer. She's in love with the dork's best friend, who plays lead guitar. Darts play an accelerated role in the story. The digestible freshness of this short film doesn't suffer at all from hearing this much about it. People always want to know, so I'll predict that, of these three and the two other nominees which didn't quite work for me, “The Crush” will win the Oscar for “Best Short Film, Live Action.”