New Films New Talents: Best of Scottish Shorts (4 stars)

New Films New Talents: Best of Scottish Shorts

(E) 546min (Scottish Screen DVD trade)

Scottish Screen presents a selection of films it funded in 2006, and there are some excellent shorts here, including Zam Salim’s award winning Laid Off, a jaundiced and funny take on death as the equivalent of unemployment, where nobody recognizes your existence and you have to go to fortnightly bereavement counselling that looks an awful lot like the sort of motivational programmes you’re expected to surrender to when you’re on the dole.

If Salim’s central character has passed away, in Drowning, Yulia Mahr’s central character aimlessly wanders around beautifully filmed Edinburgh after being told she’s got only a few months to live: she’s been diagnosed with cancer. This is fine work. A word also for Zak Hanif’s Cornershop, a mock documentary about a local newsagent come grocer struggling to survive.

There are almost 50 shorts in this excellent package highlighting the great work of Scottish film schemes and initiatives Tartan Shorts, GMAC, Bridging the Gap, Artist’s Film and Video, Pocket Shorts among others. There is also some really impressive animation, experimental and documentary work here.

This DVD is not available to buy but The List has ten exclusive copies to give away. To be in with a chance of winning one send an email now marked ‘Scotshort’ to stating your details. Usual List rules apply.
(Tony McKibbin)