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Sundance Online Shorts – Best of the Current Crop

As posted a couple of days ago, selected Sundance 2011 shorts are available to view for free via The Screening Room Youtube Channel.  Part of me wishes that Sundance and YouTube would repeat last year’s experiment in which a small selection of full length movies were made available to rent online for a very reasonable $3.99.  Alas, as reported by the NYTimes, the experiment was a financial failure yielding only $10,709.16 in revenue for YouTube.  Not exactly earth shattering numbers by any measure.  Perhaps making the movies available on devices such as Apple TV or Roku players would have been more successful.  After all, who wants to watch a full length movie hunched over a computer desk on a cramped laptop screen whilst a 50-inch flatscreen lies dormant in the living room?  I digress… back to this year’s shorts.

“Skateistan:To Live and Skate Kabul” is my personal pick of those currently offered, and while it’s nine minute length does not permit a deeper exploration of some of the underlying issues concerning the lives of those featured, the material is nonetheless engaging.  It takes talent to produce a documentary short as effective as this. There is a compelling narrative here as well as some effective camera work and judicious editing. Director Orlando von Einsiedel receives my applause for his efforts.

What do YOU think think?

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