Film Index

List of all 295 films showing at the 2021 Palm Springs International ShortFest. Note: When you attend a ShortFest screening you'll be attending a package of films grouped together.


Rehearsal

How do you stage a miracle healing? Boundaries dissolve between church and theater, faith and credibility.

In competition for Best of the Festival Award.
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The Ref

A young referee struggles to maintain control over a 2nd-grade semi-finals basketball game.

In competition for Best Live-Action Short 15 Minutes and Under and Best U.S. Short.
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Roy

Trapped in a lonely existence, reclusive widower Roy passes the days by cold calling strangers from the phone book, looking for brief moments of companionship. But when he accidentally calls Cara, an adult hotline worker, an unlikely friendship is born.

In competition for Best International Short.
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Salem

During a gathering in the French countryside, a young woman grows tired of her stuffy family. Luckily for her, she's about to meet her uncle's new wife.

In competition for Best International Short.
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Sales Per Hour

A young woman faces a moral dilemma when she witnesses a sexual encounter in a dressing room at the clothing store where she works.

In competition for Best U.S. Short.
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Salidas

This is a fictional dance film that tells the story of Giralda, an undertaker who accompanies deceased humans to their afterlife. Interpreted in Spanish flamenco dance and music, and set at an old East German ship canal lift, the film creates an associative fusion between Northern and Southern Europe, movement and silence, and farewells and eternity.

In competition for Best Live-Action Short 15 Minutes and Under.
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Scarlet Medusa

At the edge of a coastal tourist town in Japan, an aging scientist works to unlock the biological secret of immortality held in the life cycle of a tiny jellyfish.

In competition for Best of the Festival Award and Best Documentary Short.
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Scars

Alex Anna’s body is a canvas: her scars come to life to tell a new story of self-harming. Live action and animation intertwine in this short and poetic documentary, both intimate and universal.

In competition for Best International Short.
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The School Bus

Nebahat, a young teacher in a rural village school in Anatolia, works to help her students arrive at school safely and effeciently. When the Ministry of Education finally grants her a shuttle, she is stunned to realize that they haven't assigned a driver for the vehicle! Nebahat decides to take matters into her own hands.

In competition for Best Student International Short.
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Sea Dragon

A young girl makes a groundbreaking discovery, challenging the worldviews of 19th-century England.

In competition for Best International Short.
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Seahorse

While teaching swim lessons at a local community pool, young Yezidi wrestles quietly with her fearsome memories of crossing the Mediterranean Sea.

In competition for Bridging the Borders Award and Best Student Documentary Short.
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Seiva Bruta (Under the Heavens)

Marta, a young Venezuelan mother, is emigrating to Brazil when she meets a struggling young couple with a baby girl. Her ability to breastfeed causes their fates to become forever entwined.

In competition for Best Live-Action Short Over 15 Minutes and Best Student International Short.
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Self Scratch

A young woman, wracked with anxiety in the aftermath of a break up, reflects on her sense of self and physical appearance.

In competition for Best Animated Short.
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Shoal

In an isolated coastal town, where everyone knows everyone, Eliza works shifts at the local fish factory while her fisherman dad goes out to sea. After an apparent accident, rumours start spreading and Eliza's relationship with her father is put to the test.

In competition for Best Student International Short and Young Cineastes Award.
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Silence

Excluded from school following her loss of hearing, a young Kurdish girl feels increasingly ostracized in a village that lacks the resources to accommodate her condition.

In competition for Best International Short.
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Since you arrived, my heart stopped belonging to me

Central American mothers journey by bus through Mexico, searching for their children who migrated north towards the U.S. but disappeared en route.

In competition for Best Documentary Short.
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Sing Me a Lullaby

Captured over 14 years and across two continents Sing Me a Lullaby unravels the complex tensions between love and sacrifice. Told through the intertwined journeys of daughters and their mothers, this is a story about recovering familial history, healing inherited pain, and understanding that love comes in many forms.

In competition for Best Documentary Short.
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Sisters

Three modern day “sworn virgins” reject traditional Balkan patriarcial expectations for women, forming a bond to protect one another. One day they welcome someone new to their alliance.

In competition for Best of the Festival Award and Young Cineastes Award.
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Slow Vine

A series of short comedic vignettes are collected into a singular short film, linked by a specific tone and pace. They’re absurd, slow and warm—sketch comedy at reduced speed.

In competition for Best Comedy Short.
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Snowy

Snowy the turtle has lived an isolated life in the family basement for the past 10+ years with minimal sunlight and no companionship other than that of his primary caretaker, Uncle Larry. In an effort to improve their pet turtle's life, the family asks—is Snowy happy?

In competition for Best Comedy Short and Best Documentary Short.
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2021 ShortFest