The 2020 Boston Short Film Festival featured a great selection of 46 short films – hailing from the United States and all over the world. Unfortunately, this year's edition didn't pan out exactly as foreseen. With COVID-19 still keeping us in its grip, a physical event was not on the table this summer. However, the BSFF team is very happy to confirm that the entire 2020 selection is set to be screened for the public in the summer of 2021, alongside next year's official selection.
In the meantime, the jury members have not been sitting still, but have been viewing each film and casting their votes. The Boston Short Film Festival is delighted to announce the award winners for the 2020 edition.
The award for the Best Narrative Film went to TATTOO (Iran) by Farhad Delaram. A young Iranian woman wants to renew her driver's license, but ends up being subjected to an examination when the officials notice a scar on her wrist and a tattoo. Suddenly she is trapped, forced to answer personal questions and exposed to insinuations. The camera captures the growing uneasiness with clinical precision.
THE UNDOCUMENTED LAWYER (U.S.) by Chris Temple and Zach Ingrasci was awarded as Best Documentary Film. Lizbeth Mateo is an attorney in Los Angeles—one who started a law practice, hired employees, and took an oath to uphold the U.S. constitution. She also has no legal right to be in the country. Lizbeth is undocumented. Frustrated by a broken system, she draws from her own experiences to fight for immigrant rights in the streets and in the courts. Lizbeth teaches to fight back—because sometimes you need to ignore the law in order to change it.
The Best Animated Film award went to HOUNDS (Israel) by Ido Shapira and Amit Cohen. The life of a dog, trained to act as human, changes when a pack of Hounds gathers around his house.
OBSCURE DESIRE (U.S.) by Kunlin Wang was awarded as Best Experimental Film. Obscure Desire is a coming-of-age journey of a teenage boy who sexually awakens after discovering the sexual relationship between his father figure and sister figure. The sibling love and companionship, which once served to counterbalance familial strangeness, is now disturbed and gradually develops into a sexual attraction and desire.
Best Underground Film went to ARTEMIO'S LONELINESS VOL. 1 (Mexico) by Juan Carlos R. Larrondo. Sex, city lights and daydreaming. Artemio embarks on regular nocturnal escapades to a porn theater and clandestine gay spots downtown. Along the way, he describes his voyeuristic experiences. This is his life. Until he meets Octavio.
And last but not least, SIZE 22 (U.S.) by Xintian Wang and Julia Kim was given the award for Best Boston Film. Constance Smith is an Afro Latina plus size model from Boston, MA. She is an advocate for anyone struggling to love and accept their bodies. The documentary 'Size 22' features how Constance Smith breaks the stereotypical beauty standard that idealizes thinness and pushes the idea that beauty comes in all shapes and sizes.
BSFF believes in short films! Recognizing the important role shorts have in cinema, storytelling, and culture, BSFF wants to help empower the next generation of artists. The Boston Short Film Festival is an annual event showcasing shorts films with an edge. The BSFF focuses on the unconventional, the unusual, the underground, the intuitive, the innovative, the minimalistic and the true artists of our time.
We hope very much to see you all at next year's festival, for twice as many short film gems!