In a year when most people saw the 2021 Oscar nominees for Best Picture at home instead of in theaters, Athens Ciné is giving them a chance to see this year’s Best Animated and Best Live Action short films on the big screen.Though the nonprofit has yet to fully reopen to the public, Ciné has helped keep operations afloat by offering private bookings for select feature films since October 2020, and will begin screening the Oscar shorts on April 2.
Here’s a look at what’s in store, and standout recommendations for each. Please note that both programs contain adult themes and language. The winners will be announced during the televised Oscars ceremony on April 25.
Animated shorts (PG-13, 99 minutes): “Burrow” (USA), “Genius Loci” (France), “Opera” (USA), “If Anything Happens I Love You” (USA), and “Yes-People” (Iceland). Program also includes a selection of additional animated shorts from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences list: “Kapaemahu” (USA), “The Snail and the Whale” (UK/Germany), and “To Gerard” (USA).
Banner-Herald staff pick: “If Anything Happens I Love You,” directed by Will McCormack and Michael Govier. A wordless, pen-and-ink drama about a dysfunctional married couple mended by unexpected loss, the seven-minute mood piece was co-produced by “Marriage Story” Oscar winner Laura Dern punctuated by gorgeous music by Lindsay Marcus.
Live action shorts (R, 130 minutes): “The Present” (Palestine), “Feeling Through” (USA), “Two Distant Strangers” (USA), “White Eye” (Israel), and “The Letter Room” (USA).
Banner-Herald staff pick: Tomer Shushan’s “White Eye” is an expertly-crafted example of the magic of short films to establish characters and tell a three-act story in an economized running time. Clocking in at 20 minutes, the fast-moving street drama centers on a man who recovers his stolen bicycle, only to have his claims of ownership forcefully disputed by everyone around him.
For booking information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (706) 353 3343.