Robin Polák, Anja Wedell
The ADIFF Short Film Awards support and nurture emerging Irish and international talent in the short film form
The judging panel for the 2017 ADIFF Short Film Awards was comprised of Artistic Director of Edinburgh International Film Festival Mark Adams, CEO of Brown Bag Films Cathal Gaffney, Vice President and General Manager of Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Ireland Trish Long, and journalist and film critic Esther McCarthy.
"The international shorts programme was strong and varied, with several different films up for discussion by our jury. However, it emerged that there was one clear winner - German director Robin Polak’s profoundly moving and innovative Speechless.
Shot through the eyes and perspective of a child on a visit to a toy store where he does not understand the language being spoken, the viewer shares in his initial confusion in a film that builds to a powerful conclusion.
We found it to be a note-perfect exercise in short film making: relevant in revealing its uncomfortable truths (but never manipulative), beautifully acted and genuinely moving. It’s a deceptively simple and very gutsy and audacious piece of filmmaking."
Special Mention: Super Sex
"Matthew Modine’s US short made us laugh out loud. A slick, confident and funny film, it’s an exceptionally well-made short and raises interesting issues about sex and sexuality and the need for emotional and physical intimacy as we age."
"The sheer range and diversity of Irish shorts in competition offers great hope as to the future of our domestic cinema. But our award goes to Graham Cantwell’s pithy, energetic and perfectly made short, Lily.
Featuring an excellent young cast and rooted in very believable performances, its story revolving homophobic bullying among a group of teenage girls is of course timely and relevant, though never too angsty.
But that was just one of the elements that drew us to this very well executed film. It’s a brilliantly scripted, fresh, unpredictable and very tightly directed and moving tale of courage and the power of friendship."
Special Mention: Breathe
"James Doherty’s short about the relationship between a traveller father and son is raw, edgy and felt very authentic. It’s a fine exploration of what it is to be a man, and a promising piece of filmmaking."
- ADIFF Shorts Jury 2017
Robin Polák, Anja Wedell
Matthew Modine, Julio Macat, Joe Toronto
Graham Cantwell, Sharon Cronin
James Doherty, Theo James Krekis, Peter Brennan
Ben Harper, Sean Mullen, Alex Sherwood