Competition Documentary Shorts
3 X Real: Doc Shorts Showcase
Total Running Time: 96 MIN
This is a rarity. Many excellent, long-form doc shorts were submitted to FFF this year, but due to program length restrictions, they didn’t fit the usual slots before our doc features. We hated the thought of rejecting them; so instead, we assembled our favorites—three stories from around the world—in this unique presentation.
DIRECTED BY CYNTHIA WADE
USA/CAMBODIA, 2010, 28 MIN
IN KHMER WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES
EAST COAST PREMIERE
In the mid-1980s, UNICEF dug wells in villages across Cambodia. Despite good intentions, the wells tapped into the volcanic area’s arsenic-poisoned water supply, sickening and killing many residents. Twenty years later, we meet 15-year-old Vihn, slowly dying from incurable arsenic poisoning but still clinging to dreams of being a karaoke star. The new film from the Academy Award winning director of Freeheld and FFF 2003’s Shelter Dogs.
DIRECTED BY RORY KENNEDY
USA/MEXICO, 2009, 35.5 MIN
IN ENGLISH AND SPANISH WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES
In October 2006, the United States government decided to build a 700 mile fence along the Mexican border. The stated goals were to contain illegal immigration, crack down on drug trafficking, and protect America from terrorists. Somebody should have mentioned that the Mexican-American border is 2,000 miles long. Three years and $3.1 billion in construction costs later, award-winning director Rory Kennedy (American Hollow, FFF 1999) surveys the fence, its many gaps, and the unintended consequences affecting residents on both sides of the line.
DIRECTED BY ROGER ROSS WILLIAMS
USA/ZIMBABWE, 2010, 32.5 MIN
IN ENGLISH AND NDEBELE WITH ENGLISH SUBTITLES
Prudence Mabhena is just a few feet tall. Born with a rare congenital disorder, her legs are stumps; her arms wizened and useless. Her torso looks barely capable of holding lungs, but from those lungs emerges a singing voice that shakes rafters across Zimbabwe. Though disabilities carry the taint of witchcraft in her society, 19-year-old Prudence has stood up proudly as lead singer of Liyana, a band of seven young, disabled Zimbabweans. In their joyous, soulful concerts, Prudence and her friends radiate hope and humor—destroying stereotypes and inspiring Africa’s disabled youth as well as the same people who once saw them as a curse. 2010 Academy Award® Winner – Best Documentary Short Subject.