Uplifting Shorts for Lock-down

It’s a strange and anxiety inducing time in the world right now. We need good vibes more than ever! I feel confident that the resilient spirit of our people in Aotearoa New Zealand will see us through the period of rāhui by staying at home and looking after each other. To help you stay positive and entertained through lock-down limbo I’ve picked three uplifting and fun short films for the latest edition of our Screening Room. The following shorts will help put a smile on your dial as people – and animals – sort out their differences and come together to celebrate life.

Die Badewanne (The Bathtub)

Why not spend lock-down revisiting and then recreating old family photos? This German film gives you a case of the feels! It won Best International Short Film at the 2016 Show Me Shorts Film Festival – and no wonder as co-writer and director Tim Ellrich delivers us relatable characters and down-to-earth humour. Three brothers explore the fun idea of recreating a much loved childhood family photo as adults. Their reunion doesn’t go smoothly. It brings up old grievances and brotherly competitiveness. Brilliantly shot in one take and in one room, this is a charming short that shows how humour can carry us through difficult times.

Quilt Fever

With the South by Southwest festival being cancelled thanks to Covid-19, all the selected shorts have been made available online, including this sweet and funny doco Quilt Fever. Every year quilters from all over the world descend on Paducah, Kentucky for a week-long competition that’s like the Oscars of quilting. Director and editor Olivia Loomis Merrion introduces us to an array of charming characters, including the ‘queen of quilts’ Eleanor Burns, and hilarious duo Linda and Alan from The Quilt Channel. Like the titular blanket, this short provides all the warm comfort you’ll need. Maybe you’ll even get inspired to spend lock-down making one.


One of the positive outcomes of this strange new world is how technology is bringing us together with friends from far and wide. I’m loving House Party! In Kitbull a stray kitty and an abused pitbull form an unlikely friendship. This heart-warming and tear-jerking short was nominated for the Oscars. It’s the third film from Pixar’s SparkShorts programme – a voice for diverse artists – and is the first writing / directing effort from storyboard artist Rosana Sullivan. It’s a gorgeous animation with a loose abstract style, and it’s the first entirely hand-drawn film from Pixar.


Want more shorts? Show Me Shorts has a huge collection of short films available freely to watch in our Screening Room. If you enjoyed these short films and can afford it consider making a donation to Show Me Shorts Film Festival Trust.

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