MIFF features one of the most highly regarded short film competitions in the Southern Hemisphere.
Thanks to our Shorts Awards partners, in 2019 the eligible short films competed for a total cash prize pool of $56,000.
Congratulations to all the winners of the 58th MIFF Shorts Awards:
City of Melbourne Grand Prix for Best Short Film
Director: Meryam Joobeur
Producers: Annick Blanc, Meryam Joobeur, Maria Gracia Turgeon, Sarra Ben-Hassen and Habib Attia
Jury Statement: Brotherhood is a masterful piece of filmmaking about bonds that tie both families and communities together. But also those that separate us. With exquisite performances by all key cast, three distinctively unique redheaded and freaked boys illuminate current tensions in Tunisia and the complexities around the call to radicalisation. This is a powerful piece of filmmaking. Through the film's sense of realism, the director tells an intimate story of one family and skilfully crafts a narrative that demonstrates the subtleties and tensions of the situation – in a way that is sure to stay with its viewers for a very long time to come.
Film Victoria Erwin Rado Award for Best Australian Short Film
Director: Jane Cho
Producers: Ilana Lazae and Jane Cho
Jury Statement: The Egg is a funny, cleverly composed and deeply satisfying story of delayed gratification. Kim Doan here displays some seriously sensational acting chops in filmmaker Jane Cho's endearing comic drama. The Egg is a uniquely Australian and cross-cultural story that showcases a superior sense of the comic and cinematic craft.
Mountain Goat Award for Emerging Australian Filmmaker
Jury Statement: In Passage, Kimia Hendi shows she has a keen eye for filmmaking, a strong sense of story and exceptional visual direction. Passage gives us a distinct perspective on grief and loss. Hendi illustrates through her command over the craft that she has a unique and focused female voice and promises to be a very exciting up-and-coming Australian Filmmaker.
Cinema Nova Award for Best Fiction Short Film
Director: Sandhya Suri
Producers: Thomas Bidegain and Balthazar de Ganay
Jury Statement: A delicate, emotional observation of a woman’s sexuality in rural India, The Field is not only technically outstanding, but a story that allows its audience’s senses to come alive. Its main actor, Mia Maelzer, leads the cast in a truly captivating performance. This film paints a portrait of a woman in a clandestine relationship that can only exist whilst the cornfields that must supply her family’s food remain unharvested. It explores themes of intimacy, sexuality, seasons in life, and the female burden of motherhood and work. It demonstrates nuance, subtlety and compassion towards its subjects, and has an almost documentary-style naturalism paired with a perfect narrative tension, that does not let its audience go.
RMIT University Award for Best Documentary Short Film
Directors: Chris Phillips
Producers: Kiki Dillon and Michaela Perske
Jury Statement: Chris Phillips’ documentation of ethnic fighting in Papua New Guinea is a powerful and necessary insight into the devastating impact imported weapons have on communities. Compelling storytelling.
City Post Award for Best Animation Short Film
Director: Daria Kashcheeva
Producers: Martin Vandas and Ondřej Šejnoha
Jury Statement: This film is striking both for its form and its story. The jury unanimously responded to this film, its metaphors and its message, and were all deeply moved by its final frame. Daughter uses both puppets and animation to create evocative and startling characters, who undertake the painful and redemptive work of disconnection and reconciliation as a father and daughter. Inventive, beautiful and emotional, it shone, and with it the vision, excellence and future potential of its creator, Daria Kashcheeva.
MIFF Award for Best Experimental Short Film
Director: Malena Szlam
Producers: Oona Mosna and Malena Szlam
Jury Statement: This film is meditative, other-worldly and evocative – a complex and beautiful production. The filmmaker uses the landscape of the Andean Mountains in Northern Chile and Northwest Argentina as a muse, and layers a geological soundscape over visual poetry of light, colour and form, produced in-camera. The result is not only technically impressive, but invitational, allowing for a projection of humanity onto a landscape that seems almost alien.
Blackmagic Award for Best Cinematography in a Short Film
Director: A.V. Rockwell
Producers: Marvin Scott, Martisse Hill and Julius Pryor
Jury Statement: The cinematography in Feathers skilfully paints the tension of childhood innocence and the reality of the tragic killings of black men in the United States with vibrant colours and contrasts.