Now in its 14th year, the London Short Film Festival (LSFF) returns from 6-15 January, screening 500 international and UK short films over the course of ten days. The fair is recognised as the premiere showcase for innovative independent talent, critically praised for its evocative cross-arts programming. It has become synonymous with the unique, characteristic voice of a generation, capturing experiences and events, making it both a significant event for artists and a pivotal moment in the industry’s calendar.
The mantra for this edition, This is Happening Without your Permission, comes from Huggy Bear’s single Her Jazz (1992), a rare UK representation of the “riot grrrl” period in the early nineties. In using the song’s ethos as its central theme, the festival showcases a huge wealth of diverse and challenging work, set against the backdrop of the events and news of 2016.
A huge selection of UK short films, from music, comedy, LGBTQ, fashion and culture are featured at the event. Highlights include a project narrating the birth of “riot grrrl”, which continues to resonate with the younger generations of today’s society. It tells the story of a generation of female filmmakers who, through using confrontational imagery, paved the way for women alongside their male punk counterparts, looking to the scene, and the values it embodied, for inspiration. David Bowie Sound & Vision tells the story of the legendary figure’s career in a series of screenings across 19 Picturehouse cinemas in Britain. The film captures three decades of Bowie’s career, beginning with his experimental practice in the 1960s, to the golden era of the 1970s and concluding with his international recognition in the 1980s. The series of critically acclaimed films have rarely been seen cinematically and pay tribute to the pioneering musician who passed away earlier this year.
For the first time, LSFF looks at the rise of social media culture. The comedy strand of the festival showcase 600 vines from Glaswegian comedian Limmy, a unique addition to the program. The fair gives new generations the opportunity to reflect on modern social and cultural issues, ultimately questioning the progression of society.
London Short Film Festival, 6-15 January. For more information, visit: www.shortfilms.org.uk
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1. New Shorts, Documentary. It’s a Mans World (film still).