@SGIFF2015: Imagine - Asian Shorts Programme

Asian Shorts Programme 

Held across two days at the Substation, the Asian Shorts Programme look to bring together and give exposure to up and coming new Asian filmmakers. The selections were wide and varied – coming from multiple countries including Thailand, South Korea, Japan, Israel, Iran and even Bhutan! A number of films were having their World Premiere (Coming Attractions, A Special Visit, A Monk In the Forest), International Premiere (April Fool’s, In The Room) and Asian Premiere (Missing One Player). 

The programme looked to cover different themes – from the avant garde and artistic, to dramatic, to animation and more. Some filmmakers chose to focus on a clear straight story line, while others preferred to be less structured in taking the audience through an experience of the film, rather than the use of a narrative storyline.

A number of personal stand outs include One-minded of which was told from the point of view of a fan. While the story itself was unique based upon the shenanigans within an apartment shared by two women, taking the point of view of a fan certainly added an extra dimension for the viewer.

Another stand out was Constant Angle – a submission from Iran. Told in a single continuous long take, it was a very modern take on the relationship between a couple on a drive to dinner. The short’s pace was very strong and fast, and the filmmaker certainly made the most of the very strong script while drawing out the best in her actors as the different challenges and situations were played out completely within the confines of a car.  
My personal favourite was the submission from Israel, April Fool’s. A particularly well scripted short – it begins rather sedately with home video scenes of practical jokes before hitting the audience with a particularly shocking clip of a practical joke gone horribly wrong. The audience is then taken on a search for the prankster which ultimately leads to a journey of self discovery for the film maker himself.

Review by Ivan Choong
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