Various venues across the country are hosting film screenings in conjunction with the 26th annual Manhattan Short Film Festival, including some local libraries in both Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.
Local screenings commenced in late September at libraries in Nipomo, San Luis Obispo, Atascadero, and Cambria. Upcoming screenings will take place at the Morro Bay Library on Friday, Oct. 6, at 1:30 p.m., and the Santa Maria Public Library on the same day at 5:30 p.m.
The Santa Maria Public Library will also host an outdoor screening event as part of the festival on Saturday, Oct. 7, at 6:30 p.m., in the Lavagnino Plaza, located in front of the library.
Attendees of any of the three screening events can look forward to viewing a selection of 10 short films, chosen as finalists in this year’s Manhattan Short Film Festival ranging from a total of seven countries.
The 10 featured films in the 2023 lineup are Sunless (U.S.), Voice Activated (Australia), Yellow (Afghanistan), Tuulikki (Finland), The Family Circus (U.S.), Career Day (U.S.), Snail (Iran), The Record (Switzerland), The Stupid Boy (U.K.), and Soleil De Nuit (Canada).
Although the films are not rated, the selection is recommended for ages 14 and older. Each of the 10 films are linked by a common theme of facing adversity. Both dramas and comedies are among the featured films, which have narratives that depict adversity that is “imposed by others or arises from personal circumstances,” according to press materials.
In the 12-minute comedy short film, Voice Activated (pictured, top), for example, a florist with a stutter struggles to communicate with a voice-activated car during an important delivery. During the tense eight-minute drama, Sunless (pictured, above), two researchers on a submarine debate whether to continue their mission after they notice a growing crack in one of the submarine’s windows.
Ballots will be available at each of the three upcoming local screenings for attendees to cast their votes for their favorite films and favorite featured actors. Awards for Best Film and Best Actor will be determined by audience votes collected at screening locations across the country.
To find out more about the 26th annual Manhattan Short Film Festival, visit manhattanshort.com. For more details on the Santa Maria Public Library’s upcoming screenings, call (805) 925-0994. The Santa Maria Public Library is located at 421 S. McClelland St., Santa Maria.
For additional info on the Morro Bay Library’s screening event, call (805) 772-6394. The Morro Bay Library is located at 625 Harbor St., Morro Bay.