LAKE PLACID - Filmgoers here will unite with audiences in more than 300 places in six continents to view and judge the work of next-generation filmmakers from around the world Friday, when the 15th annual Manhattan Short Film Festival is screened at the Lake Placid Center for the Arts.
Out of 520 entries received from 49 countries around the world, Manhattan Short selected 10 short films as finalists. Each is 18 minutes or less in length. Countries represented this year include Norway, the Netherlands, Russia, England, Ireland, Peru, France, Romania, Spain and the United States.
Each filmgoer will be handed a voting card upon entry and be asked to vote for the one film to win. Votes are tallied at each participating cinema and submitted to festival headquarters, where the winner will be announced in New York City, as well as posted at www.ManhattanShort.com, at 10 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 7.
“The Devil’s Ballroom”
Some past finalists have been nominated for and even won Oscars in the short film category.
In one week, more than 100,000 people from as far north as St. Petersburg, Russia, to as far south as Buenos Aires, Argentina, as far east as Kathmandu, Nepal, and as far west as Perth, Australia, plus more than 150 cinemas in 47 U.S. states, will come together to view and vote on these 10 films.
"While the goal of any festival is to discover and promote new talent, the real aim of this festival is bringing communities together via stories from around the world," Nicholas Mason, the festival's founder and director, said in a press release.
"Never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that what started as a small, relatively simple event, when I projected a handful of short films onto the side of a truck on a downtown Manhattan street 15 years ago, would grow into what it is today."
"The Devil's Ballroom" (Norway 15:30) Henrik M. Dahlsbrakken
On a perilous journey to the North Pole, an Arctic explorer makes a critical decision with lifelong consequences.
"A Curios Conjunction of Coincidences" (The Netherlands 8:34) Joost Reijmers
Bad luck connects three men together even though they live in different centuries.
"Where Does the Sea Flow" (Russia 14:00) Vitaly Saltykov - world premiere
A mother comes to grips with a precocious young daughter and the violent circumstances of her birth.
"Two & Two" (UK 8:25) Babak Anvari - U.S. premiere
In a school run by an authoritarian regime, a seemingly ridiculous decree becomes a syllabus for terror.
"Cluck" (Ireland 18:57) Michael Lavelle
Feathers are ruffled at the orphanage when a new arrival threatens to upset the pecking order.
"Behind The Mirrors" (Peru 12:10) Julio O. Ramos
When one of the night's customers at a disreputable motel leaves an unexpected mess, the young manager sees an opportunity that may change his family's fortunes forever.
"The Elaborate End of Robert Ebb" (France/UK 12:50) Clement Bolla, F.X. Goby, Matthieu Landour
A monster terrorizes a town and induces collective hysteria with hilarious results.
"Superman, Spiderman or Batman" (Romania 11.00) Tudor Giurgiu
Inspired by his favorite comic book heroes, a young boy tries to save the day.
"'92 Skybox Alonzo Mourning Rookie Card" (USA 12.00) Todd Sklar
Brothers Jim and Dave sort out their differences in extreme fashion when their father dies.
"Voice Over" (Spain 9.50) Martin Rosete
A series of life-threatening experiences pale in comparison to a situation that requires real courage.