Documentary Shorts Competition

The films may be short in length but not in scope, and represent individual and community topics and concerns in their contemporary contexts. These films are eligible for an Audience Award for Best Documentary Short.



La Tejedora de Raíces // The Roots Weaver

A film by Fernando Saldivia Yáñez

Chile, 2021
Documentary/Indigenous/Grass Weaving
10 min, Color
No Dialogue

Regional Premiere

A poetic observation of the indigenous Yaghan art of grass-weaving as developed in Chile. Documenting an inter-generational process from the extraction of raw material to the exhibition of a final piece, The Roots Weaver explores how an original tradition is attached to diverse aural and visual textures.

Mi Arma

A film by Jesús Pascual

Spain, 2019
7 min, Color
Spanish, English; English subtitles

Tradition and subversion. Folklore and revolution. The passion of a young drag queen for the cultural elements of his homeland, Andalusia, and the problems involved in incorporating them into his own artistic expression.

Until We Find Them

A film by Hunter N Johnson

United States/Mexico, 2021
30 min, Color
Spanish, English; English subtitles

Regional Premiere

Mexico has over 80,000 disappeared people. Darwin and Dalia are married independent journalists in Guadalajara dedicated to searching for them. Their investigative work helps lift up the voices of thousands of families who will stop at nothing to find their loved ones, and details how the government has repeatedly failed to help them in their search. But as reporters with visible profiles, they aren’t naive to the massive risk they take on to tell these stories; Mexico is in fact one of the most dangerous countries to be a journalist. Yet despite the horrific stories they investigate everyday, Darwin and Dalia ultimately see journalism as an instrument of peace; a way of communicating hope and preserving memory. And while their work may win them distinguished journalism awards, they use it not for personal recognition, but as a potent tool to fight injustice.

Men Who Talk

A film by Cristin Stephens

Brazil/United States, 2020
Documentary/Black Brazilian Men/Identity
14 min, Color
Portuguese, English subtitles

World Premiere

Men who Talk is an intimate portrait of Black Brazilian men, struggling to find their place in society. They meet twice a month at “the circle” to grapple with a shared, challenging reality.

Melting Snow

A film by Janah Elise Cox

United States, 2021
7 min, Color/Black & White
Spanish, English; English subtitles

In 1952, the mayor of San Juan, Felisa Rincon de Gautier, partnered with the now defunct U.S. carrier Eastern Airlines to transport two tons of snow from New Hampshire to Puerto Rico. The snow was a gift to the island meant to enchant Puerto Rican children with a “white” American Christmas. The spectacle represented an unfair economic transaction: planes brought capitalist instant gratification in the form of snow, and returned to the U.S. filled with the Puerto Rican cheap labor that would populate el barrio.