I watched five Oscar-nominated shorts yesterday, ranging in length from 12 minutes to 30 minutes. They were like a tour around the world, set in Afghanistan, Serbia, UK, Palestine and Germany.
What struck me the most was how I’ve forgotten how sanitized everything I normally watch is, as if there’s a fantasy filter between the viewer and what’s on the screen. This is true of 99% of the movies we watch, and around 99.9% of the TV, including the news. Even what we watch that is portrayed as real, as raw, as reality in all its beauty and ugliness is nearly always censored, and not in a good way.
Some of these shorts were brutal in its depiction of the human condition: a father grasping onto his daughter for dear life because she is the only thing he has left in his world, countries torn by senseless hatred killing each other for absolutely nothing, a young man who stutters alienated and isolated from the rest of the human race because of his difficulty in verbal communication.
If you get a chance to watch these shorts, I highly recommend them. Very stimulating, very intense. I even wanted to smoke a cigarette afterwards, and my addiction died yeas ago.