An International Batch of Oscar Nominated Live Action Shorts

Once again, ShortsTV is bringing this year’s batch of Oscar nominated Live Action, Documentary, and Animated Short Films to a global audience.  In the United States, starting April 2, check your local theater listings to see if and when the Showcases will be playing.  The program will also be available on VOD via iTunes, Amazon, Verizon, Google Play beginning April 20.  Here’s our rundown of the Live Action films, chiming in from all over the globe.

Get an edge in your Oscar pool, and more importantly, be informed about some solid, if short, cinema that is being celebrated:

Feeling Through

Doug Roland, USA, 19 min.

Overly sentimental and and heavy, but still an undeniably sweet story about a kid helping a blind and deaf man get home. I may have been harder on this movie other years, but after a pandemic we all got through together (besides anti-mask dicks), this was a message that felt appropriate.

Two Distant Strangers

Travon Free, Martin Desmond Roe, USA, 29 min.

The Groundhog Day formula has been run into the ground recently, but it’s used very efficiently in this short about a black man constantly being killed by a cop. There are moments where this movie looks like it’s gonna go in a cringy direction, but knows to pull it back and hits with an uncomprimised message, but with a hint of fun behind it.

The Letter Room

Elvira Lind, USA, 33 min.

A slight but funny short made all the better by Oscar Isaac’s presence. He plays a corrections officer with a heart of gold who thinks he has more impact than he really does. I love his combination of kind-hearted and dimwitted. 

The Present

Farah Nabulsi, Palestein, 25 min.

The Present is a movie about a man traveling to West Bank to buy a fridge. It shows in a micro sense the daily harassment that the Middle East conflict causes to ordinary people. the film is not bad, but a lot of time is spent to get to a point that seems to pale in comparison to the magnitude and severity of some of the other movies in the narrative block this year- and to the severity of other stories of death that happen in the conflict. 

White Eye

Tomer Shushan, Israel, 20 min.

Incredibly shot yet bleak film about a guy whose bike is stolen and his anger blinds what should be his empathy for the thief. It feels almost like a reverse Bicycle Thief.