2019 Oscar Nominated Documentary Shorts

Documentary-Shorts - The GBY

Black Sheep – After the high-profile killing of Damilola Taylor, Cornelius’ family move out of London. But when they discover their new town is run by racists, Cornelius takes a drastic step to survive.  A young man that faces racism for the first time goes to extremes to make friends with the wrong crowd.  This movie didn’t have an epilogue so we weren’t quite sure what the directors were trying to tell us.

Life Boat – Volunteers from a German non-profit risk the waves of the Mediterranean to pluck refugees from sinking rafts pushing off from Libya in the middle of the night. LIFEBOAT puts a human face on one of the world’s greatest contemporary global crises and provides a spark of hope surrounding how civil society can intervene in the refugee crisis in a meaningful way.  The interviews of the refugees do put a human face to this crisis.  The rescuers seem to be devoted to their cause.

End Game – Filmed and edited in intimate vérité style, this movie follows visionary medical practitioners who are working on the cutting edge of life and death and are dedicated to changing our thinking about both.  Several different options are given to people in the last stages of life.  The most interesting was the choices made by individuals rather than the ones made by those swayed by the needs of their family.

A Night at the Garden – Archival footage of an American Nazi rally that attracted 20,000 people at Madison Square Garden in 1939, shortly before the beginning of World War 2.  This was just editing existing footage.  I think this film was nominated because of its political bend.

Period.  End of Sentence – In a rural village outside Delhi, India, women lead a quiet revolution. They fight against the deeply rooted stigma of menstruation. “Period. End of Sentence.” — a documentary short directed by Rayka Zehtabchi — tells their story. For generations, these women didn’t have access to pads, which lead to health problems and girls missing school or dropping out entirely. But when a sanitary pad machine is installed in the village, the women learn to manufacture and market their own pads, empowering the women of their community. They name their brand “FLY,” because they want women “to soar.” Their flight is, in part, enabled by the work of high school girls half a world away, in California, who raised the initial money for the machine and began a non-profit called “The Pad Project.”   This was by far the most enlightening film we saw.  We were reminded how lucky we are and things we just take for granted.

We would like to see Period. End of Sentence with this category.


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