For the second time this month, HollyShorts and BitPix are proud to show some of the most interesting and well-made short films out there today. This group of films come from incredibly talented people, all bringing their own unique voices. These films are all available now on BitPix, and will be screening from June 24th to June 27th, through the BitPix app or on BitPix.TV.
Intervention – Directed by Linda Palmer and starring Julia Silverman and Janel Tanna, this film focuses on a topic that is so important: the opioid crisis, and those who are affected by it. This destructive force has brought so many to their knees, having claimed countless lives and destroyed far more. Facing depressing and crippling addiction, this film, penned by Deon van Rooyen, focuses on a cry for help, and the idea that even with support, it might not be so easy to overcome something so strong. This is a difficult and heartbreaking film that really seems to connect with the struggles that so many face while locked in the throes of addiction, and how much it can affect not only them, but others around them. Silverman and Tanna are amazing in this film, bringing so much emotional power to their roles.
Have A Nice Night – Starring Nick Clark, this film shows us the journey of a young man who is having an eventful evening. Written by Danny Malone and Patrick Emralino and directed by Malone, this is a very fascinating film, with the protagonist, a man who seems to be almost compelled to be kind to people despite his unfortunate luck, dressed in a Fred Rogers-esque outfit that truly evokes the legendary television personality. As things unfold, we watch as a truly awful night unfolds, despite his kindnesses towards others. It’s a brilliant film in its own way, giving off the vibe that things are not what they seems, and it feels like a total mystery up until the very end where this film is going, something that keeps things really interesting. Clark is great in it, finding a way to be both a shining beacon of friendliness and hope, and an unfortunate sad-sack at the same time.
Leaving To Live – This incredible French film stars Raphaelle Agogue as Alexandra, a woman looking to leave her husband, along with her young daughter. While this can be difficult enough, she’s looking to do it in secret, without the girl telling her father of their plans. While we only get brief glimpses of the issues between the two of them, the relationship is obviously very toxic, and her leaving seems to be the best option for her at this time, at least in her mind. This is a tense, tough film, but one that is so well done. Agogue is terrific as Alexandra, Bertrand Nadler does a great job portraying an extremely unlikeable character, and Saskia Dillais De Melo is very good as the daughter, being asked to meld the narrative together as the kind of eyes of the audience and making it work. Director David Rodrigues did an excellent job building something tense and anxious, but also making it an enjoyable film to watch.
40 Seconds – In her second appearance on our Screenings, the wonderful do-it-all creator Kelly Pantaleoni stars and co-writes this incredible short film, which was also written by director Anaisa Visser. Pantaleoni is joined by Mandy Galang as we watch Adriana attempt to recover after losing both her best friend and having a relationship end in a short period of time. With these two major changes in her life overwhelming her, Adriana struggles to feel like herself again. To fill the void left by those who are no longer a part of her life in the way they once were. There are really incredible, heartfelt moments in this as Adriana finds a way to say goodbye to the friend she lost, in her own way. As the star, Pantaleoni is excellent, showing an amazing journey navigating these difficult aspects of life. It is also worth noting the message of the film, which uses this beautiful friendship to not only promote suicide awareness, but also serves as a dedication to a lost loved one as well.
No Comment – Another talented creator making a reappearance, as Russell Goldman graces us with his work once again, serving as writer and director of this film, which shows an action star who reaches their limit as they are pressed about their involvement in a scandal during a press junket. Robert Lewis Stephenson takes on the leading role alongside Henita Telo as they face off against one another in a tense standoff that is engrossing to watch. The two of them have excellent antagonistic energy. Stephenson is incredible as the flawed actor who, under pressure, finds himself overwhelmed. Telo shines just as brightly, bringing a form of almost predatory journalistic acumen to their character, designed to bring about an extreme response that will help her get the story she knows needs to be told. It’s a hard subject matter, but it’s told incredibly well, showing the entire range of emotions that would go with a situation like this. This was one of the highlights of the screening, with a great last second twist that capped off an already excellent film.
Donut Give Up – This delightful Kiyoka Rhodes film stars Yohnei Shambourger as the ambitious Milena Ross, who is looking to pitch her short film to a group of investors on the “Short Film Fish Tank” as an opportunity to win a contest prize. Things go awry in various ways, leading to some really funny moments that take you by surprise. Shambourger is a delight, her expressions and body language really adding to her character. Jason Jones is also very fun as a supporting cast member, working well with Shambourger to bring this silly but very entertaining story to life. This film also highlights the creativity of filmmakers during the pandemic. While it might not be that this team did a distanced film shoot, the way things are presented (a video pitch, video calls between the two characters), it does show the way that distanced creating can be displayed and shown in a way that makes all too much sense now. Intended or not, it’s an excellent unspoken quality of the film, adding to its many others.
Two Weeks Notice – Starring Mickey Schiff and Marisa Hood, who also wrote the film, this Melanie Thompson directed vehicle plays with a familiar concept in a very funny way. While the premise itself is familiar, it’s still done is a hilarious and unexpected form, as the couple unravels their ailed relationship as Michael gives his girlfriend Jenny the notice that in two weeks, he’s ending their relationship. As the reasoning for this is revealed and their myriad problems are uncovered, the two of them go on a wild journey explaining themselves, their motives and why things are now at the point they are, all while attempting to figure out why anyone would give this kind of advanced notice, to pretend continue on in the relationship, knowing that it will soon be ending because of unhappiness. The concept is brilliant, with Hood and Schiff giving it so much character and vibrancy. There are some darker moments, but overall, it was a really funny and well developed film that reinvented something of an old trope.
Congrats to all of the amazing creators that were selected for this month’s screenings! It was amazing to see both returning creators and new faces shine in this month’s screenings. Make sure to support the cast and crew of these well-deserving films during their screenings! They will be showing from June 24th-27th, only on BitPix!