By Kareem Sheikh
In short film, anything is possible, and these art films are out to prove it. The MODES 1 and 2 programs contentiously evade the common principles of cinema that we’ve grown comfortable with, instead using never-before-seen cinematography and storytelling to elicit powerful emotional responses.
Here are the top five MODES shorts that will reframe your expectations of film:
1. Find Fix FinishOnly in today’s age would we find a film based entirely from the view of an aerial drone—a stark reminder of the reality of war in the tech era. Four American pilots share the intimate experience of monitoring their targets and preparing for termination.
2. Martin Cries (GTA V)Shot entirely using the video game Grand Theft Auto V, Martin Cries aims to redefine our expectations as we join Martin on a fearless and volatile quest to find his friends.
3. Jardins d’ÉtéPerhaps the closest that most of us will come to synesthesia—a confusing of the senses that causes colours you can taste or sounds you can see—it’s hard to tell whether this homage to Monet’s gardens is soothing or stimulating. Either way, it’s an audiovisual experience your brain won’t want to miss.
4. Tashlikh (cast off)Using only severe, poignant minimalism to convey deep emotional complexity, Tashlikh invites audiences to join in on the relief of casting off your sins. In Yael Bartana’s arresting visual performance, the artist deliberately discards private belongings as a means of liberation from historical trauma.
5. Green Screen GringoVacillating between conspicuous and camouflaged, a man-sized green screen creates an unnerving visual partition in this portrait of Brazilian street life, where a Dutch gringo observes Rio’s political landscape.
The Modes 1 program will be screening Thursday, September 28 and Wednesday, October 11 and Modes 2 will be screening Friday, September 29 and Monday, October 2. For tickets click here.