International Competition - General

The international competition of the Hamburg Short Film Festival loves experiments: artistically special narrative paths which are extremely aware of their means as well as abstract experimentations. This is what this competition stands for. And along with our other similarly open-minded programmes, this is one of the defining and unique film artistic features of the Hamburg International Short Film Festival. It is what distinguishes us from most German and many international short film festivals.

Another unique feature is the “Hamburg Mix”. For unlike many others, our selection consists of all types and genres of contemporary international short film productions. In the programme, you’ll find a carefully compiled mix of narrative, documentary, animated and abstract films. This careful placement adds a kind of wonderful surplus value because it creates cross connections across continents and displays aesthetic parallels as well as flickering counter currents while simultaneously questioning all of the allegedly distinguishing criteria between documentary, narrative and experimental films. When it works out well, they are all films in the end. The very best ones, of course.

34 short films compete for the Hamburg Short Film Award (3,000 euros), which is chosen by a jury of three. The audience votes for the best short film from both the International and the German competition, and the winner receives the Audience Award (1,500 euros).

Film Programmes International Competition

International Competition 1 - Valleys, Islands, Ornaments
Wednesday 06. Juni 2018 | 19:00 | Zeise 1
Saturday 09. Juni 2018 | 17:30 | Zeise 1

International Competition 2 - I speak, I am

Wednesday 06. Juni 2018 | 21:15 | Zeise 2
Friday 08. Juni 2018 | 19:45 | B-Movie

International Competition 3 - Open Space

Thursday 07. Juni 2018 | 17:30 | Zeise 2
Friday 08. Juni 2018 | 17:30 | B-Movie

International Competition 4 - The Hood, the House, the Horse

Thursday 07. Juni 2018 | 19:45 | Zeise 2
Saturday 09. Juni 2018 | 17:30 | Zeise 2

International Competition 5 - Sore Losers

Thursday 07. Juni 2018 | 22:00 | Zeise 1
Saturday 09. Juni 2018 | 19:45 | Zeise 2

International Competition 6 - Support your local Sherrifs
Friday 08. Juni 2018 | 22:00 | Zeise 2
Saturday 09. Juni 2018 | 22:00 | B-Movie
Friday 08. Juni 2018 | 14:00 | Zeise 2

International Competition 7 - Lyrics and Tracks

Friday 08. Juni 2018 | 19:45 | Zeise 1
Saturday 09. Juni 2018 | 22:15 | Zeise 1

International Competition 8 - Learn and Sleep!
Friday 08. Juni 2018 | 22:00 | Zeise 1
Saturday 09. Juni 2018 | 15:00 | Zeise 2

International Competition 2018 in detail

Of course, there were trains once again. And absences, trances, shadow creatures and alliances of light and dark, fluctuations between idleness and movement as well as tableaux vivants vs algorithmically controlled light storms.

Taken from thousands of submissions from hundreds of countries, it all repeatedly brings us back to the beginning of cinema. To the legendary horse-racing bet, the illusion of movement, the 24 fluctuations of light and darkness per second. This is the true magnificence of the short film in its utter awareness of its own capabilities. It reminds us of its universal skeleton, its lust for deception and its essence of being an artificial creation. It brings us back to the fair and a time when cinema itself was still an experiment.

In the year in which the Lumiere brothers’ arriving train panicked the first-night audience, Freud’s ›Project for a Scientific Psychology‹ caused another shock in Vienna. The self was no longer master of its own domain. It was relegated to a bricolage of the imaginary and was no longer seen fit to act as an autonomous authority for decision making. In that sense, the cinema produced its archetypes side by side with this newly discovered dream machine: the human psyche. As rapidly as it went to the moon, film went into the microcosm of the soul. It nibbled on the dividing lines between the inside and the outside, ran riot in impossible concurrencies and assembled space and time according to its needs. And in a magical way we emulated all of that in this screening year. We travelled to our world’s orbit, tumbled back into its cellular structure and again and again felt this specific dawning of consciousness in the cinema’s darkness which makes us so incredibly receptive for the suggestions of film.

Buy a ticket, grab a good seat, breathe deeply in and out, let all thoughts pass by like a Bunuel cloud and fall freely into this magical drowsiness – sleep and see!

Text Birgit Glombitza

Film selection Thorkil Asmussen, Theresa George, Birgit Glombitza, Steffen Goldkamp, Frank Scheuffele, Helena Wittmann