Special Screenings and Events

Oscar-Nominated Shorts at the Berkshire Museum

For the 12th consecutive year, Shorts HD and Magnolia Pictures present the Oscar-Nominated Short Films, opening on Feb. 10th. With all three categories offered – Animated, Live Action and Documentary – this is your annual chance to predict the winners (and have the edge in your Oscar pool)! A perennial hit with audiences around the country (and now the world), don’t miss this year’s selection of shorts.

The Academy Awards take place Sunday, Feb. 26th.

Documentary Shorts

Friday, February 10, 7 pm
Saturday, February 11, 7 pm
Sunday, February 12, 7 pm
Monday, February 13, 1:30 pm
Monday, February 13, 7 pm

 

Animated Shorts

Friday, February 17, 7 pm
Saturday, February 18, 7 pm
Sunday, February 19, 7 pm
Monday, February 20, 1:30 pm
Monday, February 20, 7 pm

 

Live-Action Shorts

Friday, February 24, 7 pm
Saturday, February 25, 7 pm
Sunday, February 26, 7 pm
Monday, February 27, 1:30 pm
Monday, February 27, 7 pm

 

Documentary Shorts (total run time: 2 hr. 33 minutes)

Joe’s Violin – dir. Kahane Cooperman, USA, 24 minutes

Synopsis: During a drive to donate musical instruments to public schools, 91-year-old Holocaust survivor Joseph Feingold offers his beloved violin, which he has played for more than 70 years. The instrument goes to the Bronx Global Learning Institute for Girls, where young musician Brianna Perez is inspired to become friends with her benefactor.

Extremis – dir. Dan Krauss, USA, 24 minutes

Synopsis: At the Intensive Care Unit at Highland Hospital in Oakland, California, palliative care specialist Dr. Jessica Zitter treats terminally ill patients. As she and her team provide the best possible care, they try to help the patients and their loved ones make critical, often heartbreaking decisions.

4.1 Miles – dir. Daphne Matziaraki, USA, 22 minutes

Synopsis: Kyriakos Papadopoulos, a captain in the Greek Coast Guard, is caught in the struggle of refugees fleeing the Middle East and traveling the short distance from the coast of Turkey to the island of Lesbos. Despite having limited resources, the captain and his crew attempt to save lives during the immense humanitarian crisis.

Watani: My Homeland – dir. Marcel Mettelsiefen, 39 minutes

Synopsis: Four young children live with their mother and father, a Free Syrian Commander, in a warzone in Aleppo, Syria. After their father is captured by ISIS, the children flee with their mother to Goslar, Germany, in a years-long journey that will test them all as they try to find a safe home in a foreign country.

The White Helmets – dir. Orlando von Einsiedel, 41 minutes

Synopsis: In the chaos of war-torn Syria, unarmed and neutral civilian volunteers known as “the white helmets” comb through the rubble after bombings to rescue survivors. Although they have already saved more than 60,000 lives since 2013, these brave first responders continue to place themselves in danger every day.

Animated Shorts (total run time: 1 hr. 26 minutes)

Borrowed Time – dirs. Andrew Coats and Lou Hamou-Lhadj, USA, 7 minutes

Synopsis: A weathered sheriff returns to the remains of an accident he has spent a lifetime trying to forget. With each step forward, the memories come flooding back. Faced with his mistake once again, he must find the strength to carry on.

Pearl – dir. Patrick Osborne, USA, 6 minutes

Synopsis: Set inside their home, a beloved hatchback, PEARL follows a girl and her dad as they crisscross the country chasing their dreams. It’s a story about the gifts we hand down and their power to carry love, and finding grace in the unlikeliest of places.

Piper – dir. Alan Barillaro, USA, 6 minutes

Synopsis: Directed by Alan Barillaro and produced by Marc Sondheimer, PIPER, the new short from Pixar Animation Studios, tells the story of a hungry sandpiper hatchling who ventures from her nest for the first time to dig for food by the shoreline. The only problem is, the food is buried beneath the sand where scary waves roll up onto the shore.

Blind Vaysha – dir. Theodore Ushev, Canada, 8 minutes

Synopsis: Vaysha is not like other young girls; she was born with one green eye and one brown eye. But her odd eyes aren’t the only thing that’s special about her gaze. Her left eye sees only the past. Her right, only the future. Like a terrible curse, Vaysha’s split vision prevents her from living in the present. Blinded by what was and tormented by what will be, she remains trapped between two irreconcilable temporalities.

Pear Cider and Cigarettes – dir. Robert Valley, Canada and UK, 35 minutes
NOT SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN

Synopsis: Drink and smoke…that’s what Techno Stypes really liked to do. And fight. He was in no condition to fight. He was sick, really sick. His disease had whittled him down to a shadow of his former self. He was crippled from a car accident when he was 17 but that’s not how he lost his big toe. He lost that in a motorbike accident. Yeah, he was broken alright… what the hell was he fighting for anyway and what was he still doing in China? His father had given me two clear instructions: 1. Get Techno to stop drinking long enough to receive the liver transplant, and 2. Get him back home to Vancouver. This was not going to be easy.

Live-Action Shorts (total run time: 2 hr. 10 minutes)

Sing – dir. Kristof Deak, Hungary, 25 minutes

Synopsis: Zsofi is struggling to fit in at her new school – singing in the school’s famous choir is her only consolation, but the choir director may not be the inspirational teacher everyone thinks she is. It will take Zsofi and her new friend Liza to uncover the cruel truth.

(will feature English subtitles)

Silent Nights – dir. Aske Bang, Denmark, 30 minutes

Synopsis: Inger volunteers at a homeless shelter and falls in love with the illegal immigrant Kwame. Both live a hard life. Kwame finds comfort in Inger’s arms, but says nothing about his family and children in Ghana. When his daughter becomes ill, he is forced to steal money from the homeless shelter to pay the hospital bill. Inger believe his lie about the theft, and when Kwame moves in with Inger they are happy for a while… until the day when Kwame’s mobile phone reveals everything about his life in Ghana.

Timecode – dir. Juanjo Gimenez Pena, Spain, 15 minutes

Synopsis: Luna and Diego are the parking lot security guards. Diego does the night shift, and Luna works by day.

Ennemis Interieurs – dir. Selim Aazzazi, France, 28 minutes

Synopsis: An interview at a local police station turns into an inquisition during which a French-Algerian born man sees himself accused of protecting the identities of possible terrorists. This close-up on France’s troubled history with its former colonies has one man controlling the fate of another with the stroke of a pen during a turbulent period in the 1990s.

La Femme et la TGV – dir. Timo von Gunten, Switzerland, 30 minutes

Synopsis: Elise Lafontaine has a secret routine. Every morning and evening for many years, she has been waving at the express train that passes her house. One fateful day, she finds a letter from the train conductor in her garden and her lonely life is turned upside down. She engages in a promising correspondence through poetic and thoughtful letters – two anonymous writers sharing their world with each other… until the day the train line gets cancelled. The story is inspired by true events and stars César Award nominee Jane Birkin.