The Best of Iris
The Iris Prize Festival continues to offer the world’s largest LGBT short film prize. The 50 films competing for the Iris Prize Best British and International Iris Prize represent the best of the best. With 30 partner festivals located across the globe the Iris Prize has become known as the Short Film Oscars. 2017 was a good year for Iris and the following selection of shorts represent the breadth of lgbt storytelling here in the UK and also in the wider world.
The films are currently being classified by the BBFC.
Winner – Iris Prize Youth Award
Director: Graham Cantwell, Ireland, 22 mins
Together, best friends Lily and Simon navigate the treacherous waters of school life, but when a misunderstanding with the beautiful and popular Violet leads to a vicious attack, Lily is faced with the greatest challenge of her young life.
“Lily was inspirational, and if it’s played in schools and universities it will change behaviours. Winning this award is such an important part of this year’s festival.”
Highly Commended - Best British Short
Director: Gregory Oke, UK, 19 mins
Set in the idyllic green hills of Herefordshire, against a soundtrack of vintage French rock, One Summer tells the story a frustrated young sheep shearer and his growing attraction to a colleague.
We Love Moses
Winner - Best British Short
Director: Dionne Edwards, UK, 19 Mins
When Ella was 12, she had her first fight. And when she was 12, she discovered sex. Years later, Ella reflects on how her obsession with her brother’s best friend Moses left her with a secret she still carries.
“We Love Moses is a vividly realised tale of curiosity, secrecy and regret. One of its most refreshing aspects is the film’s mediation through the eyes of a young black girl, a perspective seldom foregrounded in cinema. Avoiding clichés of childhood innocence and naïveté, Edwards works more in the vein of a filmmaker like Catherine Breillat, allowing girlhood to be a space of sexual curiosity and wry observation.”
Odd Job Man
Highly Commended – Iris Prize
Director: Marianne Blicher, Denmark, 22 mins
The story of an older man who gets fired from his job and is promptly left by his wife. His search for new opportunities takes him into a sparkling and colourful world of drag queens and cabaret, but does he dare to seize the moment and pursue a dusty dream?
“Odd Job Man is a well-shot, beautifully constructed film that tells a heart-warming story with compelling dry wit and humour, boasting a great lead performance.”
Mother Knows Best (Mamma Vet Bäst)
Winner - Iris Prize
Director: Mikael Bundsen, Sweden, 13 mins
After introducing her to his boyfriend, an anxious teenager faces the awkward car journey home with his mother. Filmed in one continuous take, the conversation that follows is funny, uncomfortable and touching in equal measure.
“Mother Knows Best is a brilliantly scripted and intense short film which uses a great economy of shots to tell a powerful and beautifully acted, universal story in which the realities of a young gay man’s different relationships with his parents are played out.”