Shorts Break: An Elfin Equine & A Fuel Famine

Randy Krallman’s FORCE 1 TD

Mike Plante, Short Film Programmer

In The Screening Room this week a past festival winner and a miniature horse that will win your heart.

First we have GASLINE, which won Best Short for the 2002 Sundance Film Festival. Set in the New York suburbs of 1979 amidst the gas crisis, this poignant and exuberant drama follows a gas station owner throughout the course of a very, very bad day, shot with panache and a keen sense of observation. Between angry customers, disenfranchised employees, a marriage in shambles, unsympathetic wholesalers, and a troubled son, Ben Crosby has got a lot on his plate. Director Dave Silver made a prize-winning film that, sadly given its theme, stands the test of time. It’s intriguing to see a period-piece about the 70s crisis made a decade ago, seeing the circles the country seems to be stuck in.

Follow that one up with a quixotic little gem from director Randy Krallman. FORCE 1 TD is, naturally, about a blind NYC teen and his friends on the hunt for a very special pair of sneakers for his miniature guide horse. The tiny horse, a stylish creature, always equipped with fly kicks, is in need of the titular sole so he can match its owner at tomorrow night’s prom. But finding the right shoes is never easy. Made for eBay, Krallman’s fresh and natural approach to the caveats of growing up is brimming with creativity, elevating this would-be advertisement into a charming and charismatic short film full of life.

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Alexis Chikaeze as Kai in 'Miss Juneteenth,' coming to digital platforms June 19

Channing Godfrey Peoples on a Bittersweet ‘Miss Juneteenth’ Release and the Urgency of Portraying Black Humanity on Screen

After premiering at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, Channing Godfrey Peoples’s debut feature is hitting digital platforms this Juneteenth—the day for which the film is named and which is very close to the director’s heart. “I feel like I’ve been living Miss Juneteenth my whole life,” she says.
The June 19 holiday—which commemorates the day slavery was finally abolished in Texas (more than two years after the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation was issued)—is celebrated in her hometown of Fort Worth with a deep sense of reverence and community, with barbecues, a parade, and a scholarship pageant for young Black women.

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