Independent Short Films From The 90s

Monday, April 18 by Elizabeth Nelson

Spend a night getting lost in the 1990s by catching up on some independent short films from the '90s. A number of independent short films from the '90s won the Academy Award for best short film. Most of these films were made in Europe. Short films from the '90s gave directors a chance to work in ways they cannot when producing a longer movie.

  1. "Lumiere and Company" The film "Lumiere and Company" is actually comprised of a number of short films from the '90s. Each film in the compilation is no longer than 52 seconds and was made using the Cinematographe, the first film camera. Directors were allowed no more than three takes and couldn't use synchronized sound. The directors included David Lynch, Spike Lee and Wim Wenders, well-known independent filmmakers in the '90s.
  2. "Omnibus" The independent French short film "Omnibus" won the Best Short Film Oscar in 1992. The eight-minute film is a farce, as only the French can do, in which a man gets on his usual morning train, only to find that it's no longer his usual morning train. He tries to get off the train, but realizes he'll need to pay a fine and risks being late to work, which will cause him to get fired. Together with the train's engineer, he cooks up a plan to get off the train. The late French actor Daniel Rialet played the main character, simply known as "The Man."
  3. "My Mother Dreams the Satan's Disciples in New York" This independent short film, with it's slightly nonsensical name, won the best short film Oscar in 1999. It's the story of a Midwestern woman who goes to see her daughter in New York after her husband passes. The mother is frightened by the people she sees on the street by her daughter's East Village apartment. The cast was made of largel unknown actors. It was the only film Barbara Schock directed.
  4. "Trevor" This 1994 independent short film, which also won an Oscar, explores the life and struggles of a teenage boy after he realizes he is gay. Growing up in the 1970s proves difficult for Trevor, especially after his parents and friends reject him for his homosexuality. He tries to kill himself but is stopped by something unexpected. "Trevor" was directed by Peggy Rajski, who usually works as producer for films such as "Bee Season" and "The Grifters." Judy Kain, who has appeared on television shows such as "Mad Men," "ER" and "Desperate Housewives," played Trevor's mom.