The Journal of Short Film Releases Volume 19

The Journal of Short Film is pleased to announce the upcoming release of volume 19 on July 23rd, 2010. Peer reviewed and to date publishing over 180 filmmakers from all over the globe, this volume explores the intimate relationship between abstract thought and the development of language. From still life to Chopin, each work contains meticulous visual and audio compositions. Roland Barthes argued that photography is a language, so we invite you to allow this collection of photographic short films to speak to you. But, as the proverb says, do not believe everything you hear. Prepare to be challenged visually and conceptually with deception lurking within the languages of sight and sound.

The Journal of Short Film Volume 19 Contents:

1. Infiltration – Charles Chadwick (2009, 4:53)

The film Infiltration is designed to induce a hypnotic state within which a lone figure is carried through deathly sites.

2. Hunger – Carolina Hellsgård (2009, 17:40)

The siblings Roland and Paul watch the deportation of their immigrant neighbors; afterwards they decide to enter the abandoned apartment.

3. Abstract? – Alexei Dmitriev (2009, 3:30)

An unhurried film dealing with the notion of the abstract.

4. Widow – Michael Fisher (2010, 5:30)

A Puritan suitor retreats from a courtship, unaware of his effect on the widow’s bleak state.

5. Canyon Time – Richard O’Sullivan (2004, 15:35)

Canyon Time creates a contrast between the slow-turning time of the natural world and the fleetingness of the human moment.

6. Inner Klänge – Lemeh42 (2010, 10:00)

Inner Klänge is a personal homage made by Lemeh42 to Kandinsky’s homonymous work.

7. Kyrie – Michael A. Morris (2009, 14:30)

A consideration of heavenly bodies and learning by rote.

8. The Commoners – Jessica Bardsley and Penny Lane (2009, 12:30)

An essay film about Eugene Schieffelin’s introduction of European Starlings to America in 1890, and what it means today.

9. Coyote – Robert Harris (1997, 17:07)

Coyote is an invocation of the many shady, shifting forms of Coyote — wild dog, trickster, and smuggler — told in a style that mimics his multifarious shape.

Volume 19 and subscription purchasing:

By Mail:

Pricing Information:

The Journal of Short Film

Film Studies Program,

Smith Laboratory Rm4108

174 W. 18th Ave

Columbus, Oh 43210 USA

By Phone: 614-292-6044

Volume 19:

Individual: $10, Institution: $18

Yearly Subscription:

Individual: $36, Institution: $72


A note on Volume 18

While I was preparing to write the press release for Volume 18, the most recent of the Journal of Short Film’s publications, I watched the collection of works in sequence again and again. Each time the films revealed to me an even greater incite into its theme of communicating across space and time, and those areas of misinterpretation we all encounter in life. Each viewing I would return to the same piece, Rob Tylor’s Color + Modulation 1. The film is the first in a collection of eight films on 16mm. Rather than shooting with the film, Tylor hand painted each frame with a spinning wheel of vivid colors and light, and provided a meditative soundtrack accompaniment. The piece is absent of dialog and human presence, although the artist’s imprint is clearly visible as each frame is slightly different than the next. The effect is mesmerizing. The slight hissing and popping with the circular movements of the brushstrokes liken to a glowing vinyl, with colors so meticulously chosen they create retina burning compositions. The colors lift off of the screen in a neon electric glow and into the world outside of the monitor or screen.

I have always personally struggled with interpreting the abstract. As most humans, I seek that which fits into neatly categorized packages, seeking order in this life full of chaos. In this way Color + Modulation 1 challenges me with the questions posed by the encapsulating work of Volume 18, I Cannot Understand You by David Baeumler. How do we understand each other over so many differences? Can we learn to discover and accept those things that bind us as humans? Can we understand without using arbitrary names and calculation, but simply appreciate our language of expression without using a translator, accept the images of our world without a guide? We are all moved by and survive through the color and light of our experience.

The Journal of Short Film Releases Volume 18

The Journal of Short Film is pleased to announce the immediate release of volume 18. Peer reviewed and to date publishing over 180 filmmakers, this a collection of shorts films which explore how humans communicate across space and time. Through highly stylized techniques, the camera observes children and soldiers in the landscapes of Iraq, poetic compositions of nature in 19th century Manhattan, and an impressionistic stop motion animated look at a county fair, just to name a few destinations in this painterly collection of works.

The Journal of Short Film Volume 18 Contents:

Color + Modulation 1 – Rob Tyler (2008, 5:14) Hand painted and digitally manipulated 16mm film provides simple and clean compositions inspired by industrial design and graphic arts.

Sebastian – Ann Steuernagel (2007, 6:00) Sebastian, derived from found documentary footage, is a meditation on beauty, destruction and the unconscious.

Cateract – Sainath Choudhury (2005, 9:00) In part buddhist koan, in part urban love story, the film poses the question of unconditional love, and suggests that there may be an answer.

Winning the Peace – Eli Kaufman (2004, 18:00) An Iraqi-American Marine returns to Iraq to redeem his place of birth, only to destroy the people he hoped to save.

Tidal Wave – Salise Hughes (2005, 1:36) One man’s nightmares take physical shape in a rising tide that seems to be taking the form of each figure in the crowd.

Somewhere Never Traveled – Ben Garchar (2009, 5:30) Only one love, only one take, and then what?

Five County Fair – David Ellsworth (2008, 16:00) An impressionistic super-8 look at Farmville, Virginia’s annual Five County Fair.

The Commoners – Jessica Bardsley and Penny Lane (2009, 12:30) An essay film about Eugene Schieffelin’s introduction of European Starlings to America in 1890, and what it means today.

I Cannot Understand You – David Baeumler (2004, 5:44) Don’t fear life’s misunderstandings – let a philosophical tape recorder guide you through a world of fireworks, flowers and thrill rides.

Volume 18 and subscription purchasing:


By Mail:
The Journal of Short Film
Film Studies Program,
Smith Laboratory Rm4108

174 W. 18th Ave Columbus, Oh 43210 USA

By Phone: 614-292-6044

Volume 18:
Individual: $10,
Institution: $18

Yearly Subscription:
Individual: $36, Institution: $72

Call for submissions for Volume 20

Submissions for Volume 20 are due Friday, April 30th.
Submit films of less than 20 minutes to:

The Journal of Short Film
Film Studies Program
Smith Laboratory, Rm 4108
174 W. 18th Avenue
Columbus, OH 43210, USA

The Submission must contain your:
Film, name, postal address, email address and telephone number.
Include an addressed, stamped envelope if you’d like it returned.
All submissions are carefully considered. It may take up to 2 months after the
deadline to respond. Please do not submit films via email.

Acceptable submission formats:
DVDs are preferred, though VHS tapes will be accepted on a need basis.
DVDs must be Region 1, NTSC. Please no PAL tapes or discs.

Rights and Clearances
The filmmaker maintains the rights to the film. The publishing right granted
to the JSF is a non-exclusive, one-time serial right.
Films must have ALL clearances available in writing. Copies may be requested

Thank you for submitting your work to the Journal of Short Film!

Visit to the 2010 Cleveland International Film Festival (CIFF)

To help spread the word about the Journal of Short we visited the 34th Cleveland International Film Festival. While at the festival we attended part of the Independent Short Film Programming and created a few reviews of the films and over all programs.

Independent Short Program #1 Overview- Cross Cultural Displays of an Oppressive Human State.
Shorts Program 1 is a collection of independent films that span from animation to documentary, from news report spoof to action flick, and melodrama to romantic comedy. Even with this wide breadth of content these films all have a connecting theme of a society with an oppressive sense of humanity. These six films show us violent bank robbers who bless their endeavors before God, parents who would do anything to control their child’s life from administering drugs to solitary confinement, rape, and defragmentation of the human image. The only glimmer of hope offered by these films are escape to a park swing or a Japanese baseball team, help from a blue bird or a bunch of red balloons, and a release of these destructive ideals through art. Overall the end result of the show is an in-depth perspective of filmmakers working in several countries, through several cinematic styles, but finding common themes and values.

Independent Short Film Program #1 : Karaçelik’s Rapunzel Review
Director: Tolga Karaçelik
Run Time: 18 minutes
Country: TURKEY
Rapunzel is the 6th film directed by the Turkish filmmaker Tolga Kenan KARAÇELİK since 2004. The film takes a reflective look at silent cinema’s portrayal of a love story set in a modern landscape. Based on the Grim Brothers 1812 German fairy tale the film depicts a wandering male vagabond and a parentally confined female trying to communicate their feelings from two different worlds. The male vagabond sleeps in forgotten buildings and wanders the city releasing red balloons into the sky setting them free from the confinement of the city. The confined female spends her days locked under parental monitoring forced to endlessly work on her education. The attraction to a stray balloon initiates a fairytale of romance that leads to the Rapunzel prototype Ayse’s descent out of a window onto a bed of balloons and eventually into the arms of her vagabond savior.

Independent Short Film Program #1: Darling’s Polly and Me Review
Director: Ian Darling
Run Time: 25 minutes
Polly and Me
Australian Documentary Filmmaker Ian Darling’s fictional film Polly and Me takes a sometimes nightmarish look into the life of a young girl who gains a semblance of peace only after experiencing great strife. The story of this film shows a young girl acting out a fantasy mother-daughter relationship with her toy doll Polly while she is thwarted at every attempt to create a maternal connection with her down-and-out mother. The main driving force of the narrative is the young girl’s goal of going to the park with her mother. She spends her days looking out a window at other mothers and daughters playing on the swings while her mother shoots up or gets ready to find a male client to bring home. Eventually the film gives the viewers a glimmer of hope when the young girl begins counting the days to a picnic that promises the long awaited mother daughter outing. The young girl’s dream is not fulfilled and regrettably leads to her further isolation from a now deceased mother and a society that moves around her oblivious to her plight. Darling’s visibly noticeable documentary style, use of a distorting soft focus, and the acting skills of young Emma Palmer creates a film that is fictional in creation but documents the trial and tribulation of women and girls that live in a society that often ignores their dilemmas.

Independent Short Program #6 Overview : Utilization of Tragedy through both Comedy and Drama.

Shorts Program 6 includes nine films, eight from the USA and one from Singapore. The program in total uses tragedy as it’s main form of communication both in comedic and dramatic modes. From a child loosing his teeth as an act of revenge by the tooth fairy to a father killing his only son in a struggle for repentance, the films show us themes and values that are communicating the tragedy of life. Five of the films can be classified as comedies but to gain the laughter of the audience they use comedic techniques of story telling to create a conflicting message about death, relationship breakups, abuse, physical separation from the one you love and violent prejudice against homosexuals. In the other four films similar topics of death, injustice, physical violence and unraveling the human image are portrayed in dramatic modes which does not set the audience in conflict with the characters but invokes sympathy in an attempt to create understanding. The filmmakers in Short Program 6 have created films that take the viewers from sorrow to laugher and back again and as a combined force demonstrate the powerful ways in which tragedy can manipulate an audience.

Independent Short Film Program #6 : Suter’s Easy Made Hard the Film Review
Director: Delphine Suter
Run Time: 15 minutes
Country: USA
Easy Made Hard the Film
In Delphine Suter’s directorial debut, Easy Made Hard re-enacts a true life story of a troubled son and a father that wants his repentance. Painting a picture of life in the African American neighborhoods in L.A., Suter shows us a man who is loved by children and is known for his good nature by all in his community. This man who appears to have respect for all human kind before God, is asked to shelter or cast away his only son who has asked for help after a convenient store hold up that has turned deadly.

The power of this story lies in the portrayal of the son and father. Rhonnie Washington as the loving father shows us a time and place similar to that of the Garden of Eden in Genesis. The father tried so hard to protect everyone from the evil of sin but when, through free will, the son chooses to commit sin anyway, the father cannot offer compassion. Lloyd Roberson II as the son shows us the true human condition of how ignorance of true faith in something can lead us down a path filled with pit falls and never ending excuses. The father demands repentance and the son demands understanding which leads to a conflict that humans have faced since the beginning of time. What is right or wrong and ultimately who decides. Life can be so fleeting and this conflict like so many others eventually leads to a the father’s final judgment that cannot be revoked.

Keep an eye out for these films as well as the next volume of the JSF.
Matt Swift
Academic Advisor- OSU Film Studies Program
Production Lead-The Journal of Short Film
Nikki Swift-The Columbus Moving Image Art Review

The NY Times highlights artists featured in our own Volume 6.

The New York Times has a chat with Australian independent film collective Blue-Tongue Films about their beginnings and recent exposure in film festivals across America – in addition to their Oscar nomination. The JSF included “Lucky”, a Blue-Tongue short film, in Volume 6.