The End

The Best Short Films

Why Watch? The title of Cameron McHarg‘s short film is the kind with countless meanings. No doubt you’ll catch them all. In a way, the movie is an epic condensed into 8 minutes of one man’s life as insult after injury befalls him. Everything from car trouble to a lack of toilet paper brings this poor soul to the brink of a tragic final decision, but will he go through with his own end? Pitch black in its comedy with a wallowing, vivid performance from Cris D’annunzio, it’s especially timely as we head toward the last month of the year. Plus, McHarg and company should be applauded for a punch line almost as mean as making Burgess Meredith drop his glasses near a tall stack of books. Fair warning: there’s a bit of strong language so prep your headphones if you’re watching at work. What will it cost you? Only 8 minutes. Skip work. Watch more short films.  

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Consider it the the perfect genre storm of conventions – an end-of-the-world film that uses multiple storylines to unfurl its narrative. It’s Valentine’s Day meets Armageddon (or New Year’s Eve meets Deep Impact, if you’re nasty). THR reports (via ComingSoon) that Drew Barrymore has signed on to direct The End, a film that “follows multiple story lines as people reconcile their fate on their last day on Earth.” Written by television writer and producer Aron Eli Coleite, the film will encompass a hearty number of characters, including “a sixtysomething radio personality in London intent on broadcasting until the end, a father trying to make it through the chaos in Tokyo to reach his wife and baby and a teenage couple in the American Midwest being pulled in different directions by their families.” The film is a drama, but is also described as “uplifting and humanistic,” with an intent to focus more on life versus death.

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Considering how much I like striped shirts, pasta, and films from controversial Greek directors, it looks like I may need to stow away in someone’s suitcase and get over to Italy next month for the 68th Venice Film Festival. The fest, which runs from August 31 to September 10, has just released their lineup for the year, and I may be speaking out of my macaroni here, but this batch of films really wets my noodle. Nathan already reported last month that George Clooney’s The Ides of March was likely to join the festival, and today’s announcement confirms that twofold – Ides will not only show at the festival, it will serve as opening night film. Other good stuff here includes Tomas Alfredson’s Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy (which has one of my favorite trailers of the year), Roman Polanski’s adaptation of play God of Carnage (shortened to Carnage), Ami Canaan Mann’s Texas Killing Fields, David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method, Steve McQueen’s Shame, Todd Solondz’s Dark Horse, Madonna’s W.E., Steven Soderbergh’s Contagion, and Dogtooth director Yorgos Lanthimos’s Alps. In short terms, this is an incredible lineup of films that I cannot even remotely snark on, because I would probably do something violent if it meant I could go to the festival. Check out the full list of films after the break.

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