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Film Studies: Short Films

Whether you are a film student looking for research materials or just want to sit back and enjoy a classic movie, this guide will help direct you to resources to make your search easier.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences defines a short film as "an original motion picture that has a running time of 40 minutes or less, including all credits." The short film genre has seen an explosion of interest and innovation since the 2010s, when digital technology became an affordable option for young filmmakers.

We have a small-but-growing short films collection located at call number DVD PN1995.9 .S53

Research Tools

Recommended Selections From Our Collection

The Accountant

This 40-minute feature film won the Academy Award for Best Short Film in 2001. Ray McKinnon stars as a mysterious accountant "with a knack for numbers and a love of beer" who is enlisted by two brothers who are trying to save their family farm.

Saved from the Flames: 54 Rare and Restored Films 1896-1944

This anthology features films that were originally produced on nitrate film stock (similar in chemical composition to gunpowder, and therefore very unstable). A must-see for any film student or cinephile!

Scorsese Shorts

From the Criterion Collection, this package includes restorations of five films from Martin Scorsese's early years (1963-1978), including two from his time as a student at New York University.

Short. 1, Invention

A 1999 collection of nine shorts ranging from 2-25 minutes. The longest, "Some Folks Call It a Sling Blade," is a B&W precursor to the full-length Sling Blade film, and stars Billy Bob Thornton and Molly Ringwald.

William Faulkner's Barn Burning

This selection from the PBS American Short Story Collection stars Tommy Lee Jones and Diane Kagan, and is introduced by Henry Fonda.