Vimeo Staff Picks: Spring 2022

Vimeo Staff Picks are said to be “the best short films on the internet.” March and April premieres are no exception, with empowering fashion films to coming-of-age dramas featuring on the platform. We highlight three must-sees that have played at ASFF or have recently been made by our outstanding alumni.

She-Pack

Born in Sweden and based in Norway, Fanny Ovesen is an experienced writer-director in both film and television. She-Pack – which played at the 2019 edition of ASFF – is an intriguing tale of youthful peer-pressure, as a girl’s birthday party held at a local swimming pool becomes increasingly anarchic. It begins with a ‘harmless’ game where the kids all spit into a drink and continues when they harass a poor man in the sauna, stealing his towel. Oversen draws fantastic performances from her young cast, in a story that feels a bit like Lord of the Flies.

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Lighting Tests

Tom Nicoll is the Scottish writer-director who has already amassed an exciting array of shorts and the 2017 feature Retreat. The lightly comic Lighting Tests, which played at ASFF 2021, stars Liam Harkins – who previously featured in Retreat and Nicoll’s 2017 short Test 2. Undeniably, it’ll strike fear into the hearts of any aspiring thespians, as Harkins’ character – credited as ‘The Actor’ – goes through a nightmare audition and shoot. Harkins endures all sorts of humiliations as he gives the performance of his life – albeit off camera.

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Body Language

Filmmaker Camille Summers-Valli has a storied history with ASFF, after screening Violet Hour at the 2015 edition and All That Is – co-directed with Wessie Du Toit – two years later. Her latest work, Body Language, directed in collaboration with Vogue, unpacks the complexities of body image for women. The short offers an array of perspectives on size, shape, gender and perception, including input from an array of famous faces. Actress / model Amber Valletta and reality star Kim Kardashian reflect on the influence of role models whilst transgender model Arial Nicholson adds: “I felt like I had to prove myself as a woman and fit into a certain narrative of what that means.”

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James Mottram