2019 NYC Short Documentary Film Festival Selections

Session One

Portrait of a Portrait Artist

Directed By Siena DeMatteis

Run Time: 4:33

We get a glimpse into the life and psychological journey of portrait artist Michael Shane Neal as he captures the human spirit on a canvas.


Directed By Caroline Callender 

Run Time: 11:04

Dakota Nieves and Indiana Baker explore their experiences growing up as transgender high school students in New York City.

The Yoniverse

Directed By Natalie Aji

Run Time: 16:37

The Yoniverse is a short documentary that discusses Cim Ek’s newest project ‘Glitter Pussy’. Creating a space where woman can freely talk about their relationship with their yonis.


Directed By Bruce Levitt

Run Time: 19:06

Tony always had an entrepreneurial spirit. Through his high school years and beyond, Tony became a mid-level, successful dealer selling large amounts of marijuana and heroin, and any other drug he could peddle. But his success came with a price: the death of friends, addiction, run-ins with drug cartels, and twelve years in prison. And perhaps most painful of all, separation from his children.

Jordan Casteel Stays in the Moment

Directed By Vicky Du

Run Time: 7:19

How does an artist connect with her subjects in the solitude of her studio? Artist Jordan Casteel reflects on the complex dynamic between herself and her subjects while adjusting to the recent commercial success of her paintings.

A Short Documentary About People Fighting

Directed by Solmund MacPherson

Run Time: 5:05

Consensual violence is, bizarrely, quite tender.

THE Artist

Directed By Mark Garcia 

Run Time: 14:00

Mark Garcia brings you inside the creative studio of world-renowned concept artist and filmmaker, Mauro Borrelli. Enter Mauro’s creative world where he talks about his incredible works of art seen in many Major Motion Pictures, concept art techniques and how his background as a concept artist influences him as a filmmaker and director.

Florise: The Beauty of Haiti

Directed By Juliette Bouchet

Run Time 8:30

A short documentary showcasing the true beauty of Haiti, which the media fails to portray, through the eyes of a 15 year old girl named Florise.

Session Two

Songs of Our Memories

Directed By Carin Leong

Run Time: 11:00

An elderly Cuban Chinese opera singer grapples with the continuation of her culture and legacy in Havana’s dying Chinatown.

AMANI (Peace)

Directed By Mingyue (Selene) Hu 

Run Time: 3:26

Uganda lacks the hustle and bustle of urban life; it pervades with a soulful serenity. To demonstrate their lifestyles, the filmmaker collected a plethora of scenic pictures and local people’s daily interactions and captured small video clips of the Ugandan people’s customs, especially the school children’s interactions in the classrooms.

Love & Fear

Directed By Catriona Ni Chadhain

Run Time: 15:28

Grá & Eagla is a short documentary examining Irish people’s attitudes towards their native language. The story follows comedian Áine Gallagher as she prepares material for her bilingual stand-up comedy show, giving her an opportunity to explore why so many Irish people feel passionately about the Irish language but lack the confidence to speak it.

Jessica Liggero | Boxer x Artist

Directed By Anna Remus

Run Time: 1:00

Massachusetts native Jessica Liggero shares her story as a competitive amateur boxer and visual artist.

The Last Doctors of the Santa Fe School Shooting

Directed by Melanie Bencosme

Run Time: 14:10

In May 2018, a nation stuck in an endless cycle of mass school shootings watched yet another massacre play out in a small Southeast Texas town at Santa Fe High School, where a 17-year-old gunman killed eight students and two teachers. The shooting left the community stunned, but unlike the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida three months prior, the incident quickly receded from public consciousness. But long after the dead were buried and the cameras had left, there were still those reckoning with what happened that day and it’s not just the family and friends of the victims – it’s the people that came to do their jobs. For three women at the Galveston County Medical Examiner’s Office, keeping professional and personal lives separate is essential. This time, leaving their work at the office would prove impossible.


Directed By Madeline Tondi

Run Time – 10:00

Uncaged” is a look into a community of men inside California State Prison, Los Angeles who are dedicated to higher education and its transformative ability.


Directed by: Ido Weisman

Run Time: 20:21

At the age of 94, Prof. Uzzi Ornan continuing his lifelong ongoing struggles for upholding the Secular and Democratic image of the State of Israel with his last endeavour to establish and secure Civil Burial rights where he lives.


Directed By Saskia Hennecke and Grace Tourville

Run Time: 11:30

Multi-talented transgender student navigates life at the historically Catholic and conservative University of Notre Dame.

The Manitoba Story: A Basic Income film

Directed By Ken Fisher

Run Time: 19:00

Does a Basic Income really make a difference? It’s taken more than 40 years but finally the truth is out. Meet the directors, researchers and participants from Dauphin who reveal their experience in the first documentary about Mincome.