My first night attending HIFF 31 I went to see Shorts Program 3. I hadn’t expected to see as many films as I did (because I did not fully read through the HIFF handbook about the program I had chosen). I actually thought I would only be seeing the short film Blue. As it turns out I was able to view nine films, which was a great treat. My favorites of the short films were Miyuki’s Wind Bell, Frog in the Well, To Kill a Bumblebee and Walter.
Miyuki’s Wind Bell follows a young Japanese girl Miyuki, who doesn’t feel fully connected with her half brothers and parentswho have separated, in a short self journey in the Japanese country side. Miyuki is angry towards her brothers and passive about her loving grandmother. Miyuki meets a boy, Genki, who she’s very aggressive to, who hopes to show Miyuki the beauty of Japan’s country. Miyuki is unimpressed and bored by everything Genki shows her. Feeling defeated, Genki decides to bring Miyuki to his “secret place”. There, Miyuki comes face to face with a bomb, still intact. Upon returning home Miyuki finds her brothers missing. After a dangerous encounter with a bomb, Miyuki now sees the importance of the family that she had been taking advantage of.
The movie Frog in the Well shows a young man, Jo, following his mother’s last wishes after she passed.Depressed and unsure if he wants to be happy, Jo travels Japan spreading his mother’s ashes realizing
what he’s been missing. The country he’s been living in is so foreign to him and he now sees the beauty. This short makes one wonder… what have you been missing?
To Kill a Bumblebee was nothing short of just ridiculously “OMG” funny. Two men are on a hunting job. As they come up on a huge boar they both get their guns ready and shoot. As they examine their large kill one of the men looks over to see a person laying face down on the ground. Turning him over they see a bullet in the man’s head. Debating on whether they should burying the body or calling the police they hear a person call out. A person looking for the shot man stops staring at the scene, then turns around and runs. In the chase the dead man’s friend hits a tree and lands on his back. Checking the pulse the hunters find him still alive and they begin to decide on shooting him. After agreeing it’s for their children, the hunters turn to see the man has gotten up and started running again. They shoot the man then hear a lady cry “GET THE KIDS!”. The hunters look at each other and shoot the family having a picnic. As they’ve shot the last member the hunters walk across a short bridge to find a bus unloading many young teens wearing scout uniforms. The scene ends with the two hunters cocking their guns once again.
Walter was just… cute. The film begins with an old man, Walter, sitting alone at his table. He’s awoken from his zoning out by a voice coming out of a phone off the hook. He starts explaining to his son on the phone about marriage but his cutoff as his son has to go. Walter tries to call his daughter who, seeing the person calling, turns her
phone off. Sitting at his table, Walter hears his neighbor making some noise. Walter goes outside to see what he’s up to. Hoping to have his neighbor over for some poker, his neighbor says he’s a little busy. Walter says that when his neighbor’s friends go home that he’s welcome anytime. His neighbor says those aren’t his friend, just “people hired to do the stuff no one else wants to do”… next scene, Walter playing poker with his hired “friends”. I can say, this film was just cute.
If you haven’t seen a film at this year’s HIFF, you still have time! Go out to Regal Dole Cinema and check it out, it’s worth it!!