2022 Short Film Competition

the 19th Annual Cinema Touching Disability Film Festival OCT 14-15, 2022. Lost Reel Short Film Showcase AUG 16-SEPT 15, 2022

Thank you to the 2022 Short Film Competition volunteer judges, Ali Nichols, Ethan Valdes, Sam Guest, and Matthew S. Alaniz!

2022 Finalists: Documentary

First Place + Audience Favorite: Whale Eyes

Dir. James Alden Robinson
United States
In the this New York Times Opinion Video, James Robinson, a filmmaker from Maine, shows what it feels like to live with several disabling eye conditions that have defied an array of treatments and caused him countless humiliations. Using playful graphics and enlisting his family as subjects in a series of optical tests, he invites others to view the world through his eyes. But his video is also an essay on seeing, in the deeper sense of the word — seeing and being seen, recognition and understanding, sensitivity and compassion, the stuff of meaningful human connection. In a society that does a lousy job of accommodating the disabled, Mr. Robinson appeals for more acceptance of people who are commonly perceived as different or not normal. “I don’t have a problem with the way that I see,” he says. “My only problem is with the way that I’m seen.” This is a student film.

Second Place: Anjela

Dir. Vilma Kartalska
Anjela Pencheva has had Cerebral Palsy since birth, but the difficult diagnosis has never broken her spirit and has turned her into a writer, an actress and a dancer. Through her work and with her computer generated voice, she participates in various initiatives for the rights of the people with disabilities and inspires everyone who has met her.

Third Place: Isolation

Dir. Terry Galloway, Diane Wilkins
United States
This short film introduces us to KC, a tomboy with cp, who escaped well-meant but oppressive over protectiveness to find fun freedom in their queer identity, until Covid threw them back into isolation.

Finalist: Bittersweet

Dir. Christopher Paik-Swan
An intimate observational documentary that follows a mother of three as she cares for her son with a disability. This documentary was made to create awareness for Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita (AMC) by observing how it affects a four year old boy and his family. This is a student film.

2022 Finalists: Non-documentary

First Place: Say Again?

Dir. Kelley Bell
United States
A micro short comedy where gestures during a COVID-19 masked conversation get a bit out of hand.

Second Place + Audience Favorite: Seife

Dir. Riccardo Di Gerlando
Hadamar 1938. A young man with disabilities is taken to a clinic for some experimental treatments.

Third Place: Safe Distance

Dir. Rona Soffer
The clip is based on David Avidan’s song with added words and rap by the creator, reflecting a longing for the past and for the future dovetailed by the movement of the wheelchair and the bicycle.

Finalist: Dribble

Dir. Ali Lavarimonfared, Nazafarin Hassanpour
Islamic Republic of Iran
Passion in soccer causes affection between brothers. This is a student film.

Finalst: Invisible Manners

Dir. John Lee Taggart
United Kingdom
A short animated poem which hopes to inspire and motivate a change in perception to those affected by invisible conditions...as not all that you see, is everything that's there. On Facebook at /Niemann-Pick UK. On Twitter @NiemannPickUK. On Instagram @niemannpickuk.

Finalist: Overgrown

Dir. Annabeth Olivia Mellon
United States
Rose has lived alone in her little garden for as long as she can remember; she doesn't speak because she doesn't need to. Although she struggles with debilitating anxiety, she finds great comfort in her cozy routine of caring for her flowers and brushing her beautiful hair. The only imperfection in her perfect world? A nosy old neighbor. On Facebook at /overgrownfilm. On Instagram @overgrown_shortfilm

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The 2024 Short Film Competition is open.

Extended registration ($60) closes May 3, and late registration ($80) begins.

The final deadline is June 7.

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