After day two of Arkansas Shorts, all the finalist films have been screened, and my earlier prediction of Havilah Galaxy Rodgers' Doorkeeper coming in as a winner on Sunday now has some competition.
Of the five finalist films, the last two were screened today at 5 p.m.: Gabriel Liam Cook Henk's Crossing Tides and Marc E Crandall's Banana Triangle Six.
Despite the remarkable animation brought by Levi Matthew Smith and Blake Dean Allen's Double Trouble!, and the heart behind the story told in Mike Stutz's Call of the Clown Horn on Friday, I predict the winners will be between Doorkeeper and Banana Triangle Six.
Rodgers' film was beautiful, raw and vulnerable — all without dialogue. Crandall's film was funny, charming, sad, well-rounded and touching — all with dialogue.
And this is not to say Crossing Tides did not offer a competitive edge of its own. Henk, a 19-year-old filmmaker out of Texarkana, has created a masterpiece of beautiful storytelling with scenes to match. The young filmmaker has undeniable potential in the film industry, and I would not be surprised to see Henk make his debut on some major streaming platforms within the next 5-10 years.
The awards will be given Sunday at 6 p.m.
Aside from the finalist films, a highlight of the day was Nash Edgerton's trilogy of Spider, Bear and Shark shown in the 1:30 p.m. film block. This absurd comedy is full of shock and evoked many reactions from the audience. I highly recommend the watch for someone looking for a light comedy.
A few more films that stuck out during Saturday's screenings include:
• Hallelujah, which was a short film that took the audience for a complete emotional ride. This has been one of the most moving films screened at Arkansas Shorts. An immense amount of love was portrayed through the fantastic acting.
• The Inception to Projection film Darth Vader at a Bar, which was a great bite of humor set inside of Starlite Club.
• And Pomegranate, an aesthetically pleasing film by Arkansas natives in New York. This was a beautiful look into a complicated relationship, creating a powerful sexual tension build viewers could feel.
Arkansas Shorts will conclude Sunday with two more film blocks at 2 p.m. and 4:30 p.m., and an awards ceremony at 6 p.m. For the full film schedule, click here.