Audible 7.5/10 A fascinating story about an all deaf football team with an incredible winning streak (against deaf and non-deaf teams alike), “Audible” loses a little focus at times and could have used more creative direction during the football sequences but this emotionally strong short film connects with the audience and the interviews are fascinating. Definitely worth checking out as it showcases some truly talented young men and women.

When We Were Bullies 9/10 The best of all the short documentaries nominated, this film covers fascinating subject matter and has the best direction as the director utilizes paper cutouts from school yearbooks to move the story forward, which was creative and visually stimulating. The themes of childhood trauma brought into adulthood and guilt over one’s past evoked the most emotion. In a fair world, this would be the clear winner.

Three Songs for Benazir 6/10 Despite a strong set up that showcases the struggles of every day Afghan life, this short documentary only falls short due to the ending, which felt incomplete and abrupt, lessening the overall story. There is a good heart and wholesome intentions behind this short with likeable leads but the ending left me wanting more, especially with so many other short films also set in the Middle East.

Lead Me Home 5/10 While covering the ever increasing problem of homelessness in several major American cities, “Lead Me Home” only scratches the surface and fails to dig deeper at the root causes. The people interviewed will largely tug on your heartstrings with their heartbreaking stories but the film never addresses the far left policies of the most liberal cities in America that cause, encourage and prolong these problems. Footage of failed LA Mayor Eric Garcetti doesn’t help much and the homeless couple living out of their car with a Bernie Sanders for President bumper sticker is peak irony.

The Queen of Basketball 8/10 Despite knowing several major female athletes’ names from across various sports, the best female basketball player of all time who broke incredible ground for women has a name few people will recognize. The story of Lusia Harris, an incredible woman, is a fascinating story and a high note to end the documentary shorts on. Equal parts educational and entertaining, “The Queen of Basketball” is a slam dunk.

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