Documentary Shorts


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Previous iterations of the Loft Film Fest’s Documentary Shorts have highlighted two eventual Oscar-nominated short films. This year’s collection of offers a stunningly diverse range of films, with windows into the way people live across the world.

Legal Smuggling with Christine Choy Academy Award nominated documentary filmmaker, Christine Choy, undergoes an adventure of wild proportions when she accidentally illegally smuggles cigarettes. (Dir. by Lewie Kloster, 2016, USA, 4 mins.)

Abby the Spoon Lady You’ve never seen anyone play the spoons like this! Asheville-based Abby Roach is one of a few in the world who makes a living clacking a pair of flatware together. Often underestimated, Abby’s incredible life story is anything but dull. (Dir. by Justin Johnson, 2017, USA, 11 mins.)

Metal Road For decades, thousands of Navajos worked the railroads, maintaining the trans-continental network. Metal Road explores the dynamics of livelihood, family and the railroads, through the lens of one workday on the 9001 Heavy Steel Gang. (Dir. by Sarah Del Seronde, 2017, USA, in English and Navajo with subtitles, 27 mins.)

Hairat For over 35 years Yussuf Mume Saleh has journeyed at night to the outskirts of the walled city of Harar to bond with his beloved hyenas. (Dir. by Jessica Beshir, 2016, Ethiopia, 6 mins.)

Ten Meter Tower On a 10-meter high diving tower, fear of taking the jump is pitted against the personal loss that would arise if you didn’t dare. What do we look like when we hesitate and when we make a decision? What does it look like when we overcome our fear? (Dir. by Axel Danielson and Maximilien van Aertryck, 2016, Sweden, in Swedish with subtitles, 15 mins.)

Tough Some things can only be understood with maturity. New light is shed on childhood cultural misunderstandings when a Chinese mother and her British born daughter speak as adults for the first time. (Dir. by Jennifer Zheng, 2016, UK, in Chinese and English with subtitles, 5 mins.)

Waiting for Hassana In 2014, 276 teenage girls came together for exams in Chibok, Nigeria — by dawn, nearly all had disappeared and their school was burnt. Jessica, an escapee, shares her haunting account of a friendship violently interrupted by Boko Haram. (Dir. by Ifunaya Maduka, 2017, Nigeria, in Hausa with subtitles, 10 mins.)

My Father’s Tools Steven Jerome demonstrates the traditional art of basket weaving, from tree to finished product. (Dir. by Heather Condo, 2017, Canada, 7 mins.)

The Diver Julio César Cu Cámara is the chief diver in the Mexico City sewer system. His job is to repair pumps and dislodge garbage that flows into the gutters to maintain the circulation of sewage waters. (Dir. by Esteban Arrangoiz, 2015, Mexico, in Spanish with subtitles, 16 mins.)

A Few Things about Robert Irwin Pioneering Light and Space artist Robert Irwin explored the nature of perception for over six decades. Along the way, he broke a few rules. (Dir. by Lisanne Skyler, 2017, USA, 7 mins.)
With director Lisanne Skyler in person!

Thanks to our community partners, American Indian Studies and MOCA Tucson.