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Brief encounters at ‘Manhattan Short Film Festival’

Stop-action animation is the key to “Irish Folk Furniture.”
Stop-action animation is the key to “Irish Folk Furniture.”Tony Donoghue

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The Manhattan Short Film Festival

Short films can provide a medium for bold and experimental work, but for the most part they have settled into a formula: set-up, a touch of humor, a helping of pathos, and an ironic twist at the end. Many of the 10 finalists in the annual Manhattan Short Film Festival comfortably follow that pattern.

Australian director Timothy Wilde’s “#30,” for example, involves an actress auditioning for a production of “Hamlet.” Silly girl, she’s prepared the famous “To be or not to be” soliloquy thinking Hamlet is a girl! She interprets the scene as a strip tease, a torch song, and other inappropriate ways, and what starts out as an extended dumb blonde joke takes an unlikely turn at the end.

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