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SHORT 9: Trust

Warner Home Video

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Thanks to the Internet, short films have been making a bit of a comeback lately. Sites like AtomFilms regularly showcase new original shorts, and abbreviated, much-forwarded parodies like "George Lucas in Love" and "Troopers" are landing their creators big-time development deals. Does this mean short cinema is entering a new golden age? Not really — it's still next to impossible to see shorts on the big screen, something that's not likely to change any time soon.

Good thing there are collections like Warner Brothers' Short Cinema Journal DVD series, then. Every few months, Warner picks a particular theme, collects a series of short films from around the world, and releases them on a new DVD. They're up to number nine, now, with this latest group centered around the notion of trust — between men and women, siblings, parents and children, citizens and government, and even violin players.

As is the case with the other discs in the SHORT series, the 11 films are divided into five categories: Narrative, International, Documentary, Experimental, and Spoken Word. Here's what you'll find in this collection:





Spoken Word:

Given that the majority of the films were shot on something other than 35mm film, they look as good as can be expected — that is, grainy and a bit washed-out. Only "Clown Car" and "Love Bites" look truly polished. All of the films sound fine in Dolby Digital 5.1, though you may have to crank up the volume to catch all of the moody, guttural narration during "The Raven."

If you're a fan of short films, this disc — as well as the others in the SHORT series — is definitely worth adding to your collection, if for gems like "The Raven" and "Love Bites" alone. Not only are the included films thought-provoking, the short format means you can fit them in here and there between feature-length movies.

— Betsy Bozdech

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