*All films are in program order.
Director/Producer: Angela Stempel // Music: Ava Luna // USA
A girl seeks out the mythical town hero. Will she find him? Does he even exist? The official music video for Ava Luna’s song “Steve Polyester” off their album “Infinite House.”
Director/Writer: Jeremy Lerman // Producer: Pin-Chun Liu // USA
A Jewish groom with incredibly, bizarrely sensitive feet frantically searches for a wine glass fragile enough to stomp on at his wedding.
Director/Writer: Celia Rowlson-Hall // Writer: Rightor Doyle // Creative Directors: Henry Joost, Ariel Schulman // Executive Producer: Derek Lam // Producers: Andrea Roa, Orlee-Rose Strauss // USA
Silent Street is one of ten shorts in the 10 Crosby film series. The bell hop of the Crosby Street Hotel finally gets a room of his own... and boy does he use it.
i N E E D Y o u 2 K n o w
Directors: Leila Jarman, Mike Leisz // USA
Experimental music video installation for Los Angeles based rap artist Def Sound.
If You Can't See My Mirrors, I Can't See You
Director: Alee Peoples // USA
A study of the frame. An equal exchange between friends.
Dockery and Son - FILM CONFIRMATION TBD
Director/Writer: Jack Truman // Producer: Opal Dockery // USA
DOCKERY & SON is a documentary short film about a Mother and Son's junk store in a small ghost town.
Director: Kristjan Knigge // Writers: Marie Phillips, Yvo Bronsvoort // Producer: Hansje Rol // The Netherlands
A terrible accident has left former dancer Julia paralysed and confined to a wheelchair. What could be nicer than being taken for a gentle walk in the woods by a caring friend?
Judastongue - Trashman
Directors: Sam Griffith, Alex LeGolvan // USA
This music video marries subtle high-speed photography with a creep-show conceptual art-inspired concept for a hip hop instrumental track from LA artist JUDASTONGUE.
Director: Steven Liang // Writer: Steven Canals // Producers: Steven Liang , Joshua Clark, Thientam Nguyen, Catherine Skipp // USA
When Jennifer, an undocumented transgender woman, is forced to resort to the sex trade to support herself, her boyfriend gives her an ultimatum with unintended consequences.
The Panty Symphonic
Director/Writer: Zach Strum, Writer/Producer: Micah Vassau, Producer: John Navarro // USA
An outrageous death leads to a battle over a mystical pair of women’s panties. Comic and irreverent, this nearly wordless narrative short was shot on VHS.
Pretty Good Product
Director/Writer/Producer: Christine Hucal // USA
Salesman Zip Sellermnn would like to sell you a pretty good product.
The Cardboard Artist
Director/Producer: Matthew Kaundart // Producer: Luka Fisher // USA
A short documentary about Calder Greenwood, an LA-based street artist who creates elaborate cardboard and paper mache installations throughout the city.
Director/Writer/Producer: Casey O’Brien // USA
A depressed and supine young man takes an emotional journey through his overstuffed voicemail box.
Director/Producer: Kelsy Gossett // USA
Legs (Sexy) showcases an expectation of women’s bodies while subverting these expectations with an unexpected display.
Director/Writer/Producer: Guillaume Harvey // Canada
Maxime gets himself in a dangerous adventure when he agrees to make a bomb with his best friend Guérin. But he’s got no choice it’s the only way he knows of getting closer to Guérin’s sister, the seductive Joëlle.
ELO Ain't It a Drag
Director: David Braun // Producer: Micah Cordy // USA
A heart and a brain struggle through the mundanity of their toxic relationship.
The Dream that Nida Chua Dreamed on the Morning of May 25, 1985
Director/Producer: Jordan de la Cruz // Writer: Siege Ledesma // Philippines
The Philippines, 1985: We pass thru the threshold of a pregnant teen's fears and embark on an excursion into the collective unconscious of a nation in turmoil.
Game of Life
Director/Writer: Agnès Vialleton // Producer: Olivier Gastinel // France
Game of Life
Two men meet in the early morning, on a small parking lot in the middle of nowhere. They share a secret. This year again, nothing could distract them from what they’re determined to accomplish.
River of Blood
Directors: Leila Jarman, Mike Leisz // USA
River of blood is high art conceptual music video that with imagery laced with femininity: flowers, watermelons, eggs, the female form. There are moments of intimacy and moments of struggle with the main character against herself and her environments.
Director: Roman De Giuli // Germany
Sometimes, the complexity of simplicity makes us fail to preserve the fundament of all we are and all we represent. But reaching awareness is not about the end, it is about the beginning. SINGULARITY takes us back to zero hour, 4.5 billion years back in time. It is the story of an indescribable hazard and a singular fortune: the fortune of being a human.
Director: Pol Diggler // Writers: Lidia Milette Artigas, Ramon Lazaro // Producer: Xavi Saborit // Spain
An indie filmmaking crew shots the first snuff movie with a plot.
Director/ Writer: June Zandona // Producer: Jill McBride // USA
In DANCER, a lonely Los Angeleno meets someone who can finally help him with his most unusual sexual preoccupation. A short film about strange and lonely and sometimes inflatable people.
Overcame The Sun
Directors/Producers: Julian Clark, Matt Twohig, Adam Hersko // Writer: Julian Clark // USA
A disastrous re-entry to earth forces an astronaut to find himself.
I'm in Pittsburgh and it's Raining
Director: Jesse McLean // USA
An experimental portrait of a lighting stand-in and body double for a famous Hollywood actress, a glimpse at the behind-the-scenes of cinema production.
Monsters and Animals
Director/Writer/Producer: Rachel Garber Cole // USA
Monsters and Animals is a short, surreal film that follows a day in the life of Alice as she navigates both human and monster interactions.
If I Was a Child - FILM CONFIRMATION TBD
Director: Dustin Krapes // USA
Wandering through the woods, a young boy discovers a corpse and has psychedelic visions of the afterlife.
Out of the Mold
Director/Writer/Producer: Michel Moon // Producer: Matt Diamond // Canada
The crumbling of a couple's relationship manifests in mold growing in their bathroom.
Signals - Where do we go from here?
Director: Shayna Connelly // USA
Our daily rituals are haunted by our private ghosts. Do we hear their signals or are we too absorbed in the monotony of motion to notice?
Made of Sugar
Director/Writer/Producer: Kevin Rios // Producer: Raul Carvajal // USA
A nostalgic portrait of a Cuban-American family’s evolving cultural heritage.
Director/Writer/Producer: Jody Wilson // Producers: Marc Petey, Dave Maharaj, Zach Steele, Ryan Petey, Stephen Robertson // Canada
After years of waiting for a signal from home, Takumi and his toy robot companion receive a message that they will be returning to their home planet. Suddenly he's faced with a choice to follow his cosmic destiny or pursue the love of his life here on earth.
Needle in the Sway
Director: Roger Beebe // USA
A meditation on childhood and (queer) desire using hand-processed, optically printed footage of a boys' camp outside of Austin, Texas in the 1950s.
A meditation on imagination and the unknown, DREAMTIME is the first cinematic use of deep dream to achieve a VR experience, placing you within a dream that is half human and half machine.
About the Artist
Jonathan Sims is a director and VFX artist interested in virtual reality and recurring dreams. VFX credits include X-Men Apocalypse, The Hunger Games and Terminator Genesys. He has directed for Geek and Sundry's series Written by a Kid, starring Battlestar Galactica's Aaron Douglas and You Tube's Official Comedy and created the acclaimed web series Slajov Zizek Reacts to the Internet. He first went viral with his video work for the hacktivist collective Anonymous.
Jonathan is presently developing VR cinema.
TWO SIDED is a play experience inspired to Milan Kundera's novel "The Hitchhiking game".
Switching the play experience in two different game worlds, the game represents metaphorically a girl's self-discovery of her two opposite "sides" coexisting each other as indissoluble parts of a unique personality.
About the Artist
ANNAMARIA ANDREA is a designer and researcher in interactive media art and videogames and a beginning coder.
She is a design PhD candidate from Politecnico di Milano, post-grad in communication design. She is also a visiting researcher at UCLA Game Lab in Los Angeles.
Absurd Elevator Simulator
Rethink your everyday actions with this dazzling elevator sim! Who will board next? Where will they want to go? Absurd Elevator Simulator is a game where you play as an elevator operator dealing with surreal creatures talking about their weird obsession and anxieties. As Elevator operator you have to guess where the creatures want to go, looking for hints in the absurd things they are saying to you. Inspired by their hints, you select three “elevator buttons” which in combination generate custom floors for each rider and hopefully elevate their day.
About the Artists
ABSURD ELEVATOR OPERATORS
(Elaine Gomez, Peter Lu, Tonia Beglari, Annamaria Andrea)
In true chicken or egg fashion, the AES team first formed at LA’s Global Game Jam, where we then created the first iteration of AES as our game jam game. Tonia and Elaine attend the MFA Game Design program at USC, Peter is a DMA student at UCLA, and Annamaria Andrea is a visiting designer and researcher from Italy, now at the UCLA Game lab. Together, we are all artists and designers experimenting with the reflective power of interactive media. Working in jam sites, gchats, and at home, we avoid crunch and maximize chill as we continue development of AES.
You Must Be 18 or Older to Enter
‘You Must be 18 or Older to Enter’ recreates the feeling of being a prepubescent kid looking at porn for the first time. Through interactive fiction elements combined with ASCII styled art, ‘You Must be 18 or Older to Enter’ blurs several genres together to create an anxious experience. It is akin to horror yet the fear is of being caught by parentals and being embarrassed of looking at the human body. The ASCII art makes the images hard to read close up, making the player embody a child-like role. Audiences at farther distances will be able to see the pictures more clearly, casting them in the role of adults.
About the Artist
James Earl Cox III is making and releasing 100 games in 5 years. Current count: 77. A graduate student in USC’s Interactive Media and Game Design program, he holds BA degrees in Creative Writing, Mass Communication, and Interactive Media from Miami University of Ohio. He’s shown games at E3, Different Games, IndieCade, EGX, and Tokyo Game Show, received awards from Serious Play, Meaningful Play, and GLS, and has had work in the Smithsonian Pop-Up Arcade as well as in The National Art Center, Tokyo. His games can be found at Just404it.com. Tweet at him: @Just404it
VR Vive, all ages
Childhood explores a feeling. You can create and arrange new worlds, but at times they overwhelm you. Birds are pills, cars are radios, pop songs are distant... at the center is you, thinking whatever you’re thinking.
PC game, ages 16+
About the Artist
Atley Loughrigde, ATL3Y.com / @ATL3Y
Atley is an Interactive Media and Games MFA at USC. Her main theme is transformation through internal conflict. Sci-fi is a vehicle to express perplexing feelings. She develops for pc and vr. Prior, Atley wrote and assistant creative directed BODY/MIND/CHANGE, part of TIFF’s Cronenberg retrospective and recipient of the MUSE Blackaby Ingenuity Award. Atley originated the Lyka’s Adventure book series for Penguin AU. She’s currently working on an interactive novel: Palimpsest.
Game Designers: Yiwen Dai, Atley Loughridge, Katie Pustolski, Boer Song
Music by Disasterpeace
My Mind is about an internal struggle between a teenager and an invading alien virus. This coming of age story explores identity crisis, the search for love, and transformation.
A dark 2.5D platformer with unique twin stick controller mechanics. You play as a lost little girl and her powerful firefly at the same time, using their elastic connection and gravity to jump, swing and blow up obstacles. The world is full of low poly scenes splashed with hand drawn apparitions and ethereal soundscapes. Oh, and while you’re out there exploring the wilderness, don't forget to collect a few treasures to put in your jar...
About the Artist
Bela Messex is a game designer creating virtual galleries and atmospheric adventures out of his bedroom in LA. Connect with him on twitter: @belamessex and download his latest work at belamessex.itch.io