Kiruna-Kigali, by Goran Kapetanovic
Taking an international path, similar to that laid out by last year’s nominee Raju, Goran Kapetanovic has paired two distant stories together. A woman is being carried to the hospital in Kigali, Rwanda to give birth to her child. At that exact moment another woman has gone into labor in Kiruna, Sweden. I’d expect it to be about disparities in global healthcare, but also probably about the universality of motherhood.
The Night Shift Belongs to the Stars, by Edoardo Ponti
There’s no trailer for this one yet either, though the website promises one soon. The story is one of implied infidelity, a married woman climbing a mountain in Italy with a fellow enthusiast who is not her husband. She is played by Nastassja Kinski, while her husband at home is Julian Sands. For an Oscar short, that counts as star-studded. This could either be utter schlock or a Hemingway-inflected success.
9 Meter, by Anders Walther
There is currently no information online about 9 Meter beyond the fact that it’s Danish. If you know anything, please leave a comment.
Salar, by Nicholas Greene
Another international production, this features American director Nicholas Greene in Bolivia, making a film about injustice on the salt flats. The protagonist is a salt miner, who refuses to go along with the corporate takeover of the industry by foreign companies looking to exploit local workers. He ends up getting stabbed in the hand.
when you find me, by Bryce Dallas Howard
Lastly, here’s the big story everyone has been talking about. Bryce Dallas Howard directed this short, produced by Ron Howard and ‘inspired’ by a project he’s been doing with Canon. The result is this 24-minute short, a heartfelt narrative of two sisters who have drifted apart over the years. Until recently, it was available in full online. Unfortunately, it’s both sappy and clunky. If last year’s win for Terry Geroge‘s The Shore is any indication, however, that might actually work in its favor. Everyone in Hollywood likes Ron Howard, so this has a decent shot at winning in spite of itself.