2021 Selected Films by the Washburn International Film Institute

April 21, 2021

Animated Shorts (Watch 11 a.m. -11:24 a.m. Friday, April 23)

Filmmaker: Eddie Silva

Film: “Covid-19 Zeitgeist-20”

Duration: 0:04:10

Synopsis: Short film inspired by a Tolstoy short story, made during the pandemic quarantine. From words to GIFs, different eras with something in common. How much time does a man need?

Writer & Director: Eddie Silva


Filmmaker: Scott Cierski

Film: “Six Day Back”

Duration: 0:03:40

Synopsis: Three bodybuilders sing about a revolutionary new workout regimen.

Director: Scott Cierski


Filmmaker: Silvia Mañes

Film: “Cazando Gamusinos”

Duration: 0:05:27

Synopsis: Humans possess a totem that gives them control of their imagination. When a gamusino steals Ruben’s totem, his son Hugo goes on a quest and will confront the creature to restore his father’s vitality.

Writer & Director: Silvia Mañes Velasco

Producer: Máster de Animación UPV


Filmmaker: Radheya Jegatheva

Film: “The Quiet”

Duration: 0:10:00

Synopsis: When an astronaut ponders on the quietude of space, he comes upon a startling self-realization.  The truth is written in the stars, but what will he uncover?

Writers & Producers: Radheya Jegatheva, Jay Jay Jegathesan

Directors: Radheya Jegatheva


Documentary Shorts (divided into two sessions: session one is 12:30 -1:30 p.m. Thursday, April 22 and session 2 is 6-7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 24.)

Filmmaker: Migrant Kitchens

Film: “Cocin(ando) Wichita”

Duration: 0:18:25

Synopsis: Cocin(ando) Wichita is a narrative of Hispanic immigrants and their culinary traditions in Wichita, Kansas. It acknowledges the immense value of people who are looking for a better life and how they have helped to shape the culture of the city through their recipes and traditions. The title is a play on words between walking through the city and cooking Wichita´s community.

Writers: Jose Enrique Navarro, Rocio del Aguila, Alejandra Zambrano

Producers: Rocio del Aguila, Enrique Navarro, Travis McCarty

Director: Rocio del Aguila


Filmmaker: Aleks Martray

Film: “From Digital Divide To Digital Equity”

Duration: 0:07:10

Synopsis: In this short documentary, we explore how the digital divide is both a public health & education crisis in Philadelphia and why the internet should be a public utility for everyone – especially students and teachers.

Producer: Big Picture Alliance

Director: Nasya Jenkins


Filmmaker: Mahesh Madhav

Film: “How to Bend Concrete in 108 Easy Steps  [Festival Cut]”

Duration: 0:16:36

Synopsis: Engineering meets art as we follow a designer in his efforts to bend industrial concrete into beautiful furniture. Underneath the documenting of the physical process of manifesting the sculpture, we also document the ethos and mental process of ideation, discovery, and presentation — capturing what all content creators struggle with on every project.  Filmed in Portland, Oregon.

Producers: Mahesh Madhav, Sean Conley, Ruchika Agrawal

Director: Mahesh Madhav


Filmmaker: Chris Rochon

Film: “Power for Pollinators”

Duration: 0:19:00

Synopsis: “Power for Pollinators” explores how large land managers have a unique opportunity to turn tens of millions of acres into healthy pollinator habitats. In particular, power companies with right-of-way corridors and buffer zones are uniquely positioned to create large pollinator highways. These untapped areas have the potential to become one of the largest pollinator projects in history. If power companies and other land managers choose to work together planting flowers and reducing chemical use across the landscape, we can bring back pollinators and—with them—a host of essential food and ecosystem resources. As electricity flows through the landscape, power companies can help pollinators flow through the ecosystem.

Writer & Director: Mathew Schmid

Producer: Mathew Schmid, Leila Conners, Tree Media


Filmmaker: Cigdem Slankard

Film: “Pretty Vacant”

Duration: 0:20:00

Synopsis: Pretty Vacant tells the story of a site-specific community art project in the Slavic Village Neighborhood in Cleveland, during which abandoned and blighted houses slated for demolition are transformed into temporary art installations.

Director: Cigdem Slankard


Filmmaker: Andrew Ishak

Film: “Shots in the Dark”

Duration: 0:09:25

Synopsis: The Inside Story of the World’s Most Popular Only-at-Night Campus Disc Golf Course. A group of friends leaves a fun legacy at their alma mater by creating a not-so-secret, only-at-night disc golf course on campus that is still being played by students and alumni almost two decades later.

Writer/Producer/Director: Andrew Ishak


Filmmaker: Ethan Soule

Film: “The Hubble Reef”

Duration: 0:11:30

Synopsis: Among the waves of Squam Lake exists the Hubble Reef, a diverse ecosystem of fish, birds, dragonflies, mink, and humans alike. Every year in early summer the reef bursts with activity as the local fish enter their mating season. Their behaviors, rituals, and challenges shape their futures as they try to provide for their offspring. The humans who call the lake home live among all this activity, but it is often easy to miss, hidden just below the surface. We are not living in the fishes’ world and they are not living in ours, we are sharing the one world we cohabitate.

Writer/Producer/Director: Ethan Soule


Filmmaker: Aleks Martray

Film: “A Side of Light”

Duration: 0:08:35

Synopsis: This short documentary examines how Asian American organizations in Philadelphia are working to keep their communities safe from COVID-19 and racism spurred by the pandemic.

Producer: Big Picture Alliance

Director: Michelle Wu


Filmmaker: Christina Shaman

Film: “Aged and Confused”

Duration: 0:34:18

Synopsis: Alex Jimenez has big dreams. He wants to start his own business, advocate for foster youth and adopt his younger sister. But first, he needs to find a home and manage not to flunk out of community college. With ninety days left before he ages out of foster care, Alex has to get it together, or risk going back to the world he’s trying to escape.

Producers & Directors: Christina Shaman, Anakha Arikara

Submission Category: Documentary Short


Filmmaker: Kaja Wakefield

Film: “Every Moment”

Duration: 0:05:00

Synopsis: A documentary about student Kaylee Cart and how the coronavirus pandemic has affected her life and the life of her fathers, who is diagnosed with ALS.

Director: Kaja Wakefield


International Documentary Feature (watch from 4:10-5 p.m. Thursday, April 22)

Filmmaker: Asaf Yecheskel

Film: “State-Less”

Duration: 0:50:58

Synopsis: Five years documentation of Adi Khavous’s life, an artist who chose a vagabond lifestyle. Adi left home in Israel and now lives in Canada as a solitary immigrant, pursuing his dream to breakthrough as a rock ‘n’ roll singer.

Writer/Producer/Director: Sharon Hoter Ishay


International Documentary Shorts (watch from 6:30-7 p.m. Thursday, April 22)

Filmmaker: Alex Tweddle

Film: “Honour Me”

Duration: 0:14:55

Synopsis: Abused by her family, forced into marriage, raped, pregnant at 13 and then hunted down for violating her family’s honor–  This is the shocking, compelling true story of Sameem’s struggle to break free from her past and fight back against her upbringing.

Writer/Producer/Director: Alex Tweddle


Filmmaker: Lizzie Elliott

Film: “Aging Gracefully”

Duration: 0:08:40

Synopsis: 94-year-old Grace Elliott shares the story of her incredible life, as well as the hardships she experiences as she faces the trials of aging. Grace remains optimistic, determined, and resilient as she and her family face an uncertain future colored by age.

Writer & Director: Lizzie Elliott


Filmmaker: Edouard Paquet

Film: “Remote”

Duration: 0:06:14

Synopsis: Fascinated by remote, isolated places and why people live there, I set off to Bardsey Island; home to just four permanent residents.

Producers: Saoirse Mahon, Hollie Traynor, Edouard Paquet

Director: Edouard Paquet

International Narrative Shorts (divided into two sessions: session one is 1:30-2:45 p.m. Thursday, April 22 and session 2 is 8-9 p.m. Saturday, April 24.)

Filmmaker: Niels Bourgonje

Film: “Barrier”

Duration: 0:08:56

Synopsis: In September of 1944, two Canadian soldiers find a boy washed up on the Dutch beach. Where did he come from and can he be trusted?

Writer: Paul Bontenbal

Producer: Joris Vorselaars

Director: Niels Bourgonje


Filmmaker: Memento Movie

Film: “Bloody Mary”

Duration: 0:17:24

Synopsis: This story takes place in 1982, in a little town called South Fork in Rio Grande County, Colorado. Grant, 26 years old, hits the road with his car and ends up in this little town just in front of a bar, the only one around, run by James Randall.

Writer: Joyanta Singha

Producers: Noah Gaoua, Pedro Kumessa

Director: Hamé Raeen


Filmmaker: Pol Diggler

Film: “Horrorscope”

Duration: 0:04:30

Synopsis: An ordinary schoolgirl’s life unravels after an evil creature takes over her body. Only her mother, with the help of a strange doctor, will be able to save her.

Writer & Director: Pol Diggler

Producer: Fergaht Productions


Filmmaker: Desmond Ngai

Film: “It’s Desmond (your misguided tour guide)” with English subtitles

Duration: 0:05:45

Synopsis: In a world of disingenuous wanderlusters, “It’s Desmond (your misguided tour guide)” seeks to reveal the truth behind world travel.

Writer: Desmond Ngai

Producers: George D’Amato, Desmond Ngai, Vincent Lee, Yeunjo Kim

Director: Daniela Di Salvo


Filmmaker: Asaf Yecheskel

Film: “Moon Drops”

Duration: 0:16:00

Synopsis: A factory worker assembles an enigmatic machine that produces liquid drops from the moonlight.

Writer & Director: Yoram Ever-Hadani

Producers: Yoram Ever-Hadani, Kobi Hoffmann, Milos Djukelic


Filmmaker: Hugo Andre

Film: “Soul Forest”

Duration: 0:14:59

Synopsis: Set in a dystopian future, the jail system is undergoing experimental changes. External behavioral experts and scientists alike are carrying out their first test by selecting a handful of current offenders to undergo a virtual simulation against their knowledge and consent. The story begins with four main characters tied together, abandoned and confused in the middle of a forest. As the story develops, we learn that the forest they have been placed in is a virtual simulation- made to test their behavioral characteristics and group interactions. Completely unaware of the offenders, they are being monitored closely by scientists and parole officers- assessing their every move and concluding whether they are fit to re-enter a functioning society, after years of isolation for violent crimes.

Writers: Hugo Andre, Will Masheter

Producer: Hugo Andre

Director: Hugo Andre


Filmmaker: Niels Bourgonje

Film: “Swipe”

Duration: 0:05:48

Synopsis: A girl finds out that she has a match on a dating app with a stranger, despite swiping him to the left moments ago. She starts to fear that the man is dangerously close to her.

Writers: Niels Bourgonje, Paul Bontenbal

Producer: Steffie van Rhee

Director: Niels Bourgonje


Filmmaker: James Hughes

Film: “The Inuring”

Duration: 0:09:58

Synopsis: A bullied teenage girl finally confronts her sister to drag their fractured past out into the light.

Writer/Producer/Director: James Hughes


Filmmaker: Aashish Rego

Film: “The Longing”

Duration: 0:03:40

Synopsis: While technology has made it easier to be “alone together,” the deep burning fire of love that once consumed us, needs just a little playback from the days when you stole glances, when the heart fluttered and when you fought many battles just to spend a few moments together.

Writers: Krishna Sawant, Amee Parikh

Producer: SOC FILMS PVT LTD

Directors: Krishna Sawant, Ashna Ranade


Filmmaker: Ingeborg Putter

Film: “Turn it Around”

Duration: 0:09:23

Synopsis: At a house party 15-year-old Bram is surrounded by friends and draws the attention of many pretty girls. But he has no interest in them. He has fallen hopelessly in love with the pretty boy on the dance floor: 17-year-old Florian. Love at first sight. There is only one problem: no one knows that Bram is gay. As the evening progresses and the tension rises between the two boys, Bram realizes that he has to make a choice. When a game of spin the bottle starts, he decides to twist the fate of the evening, and maybe his whole life.

Writer: Paul Bontenbal

Producer: Worldvisuals Film

Director: Niels Bourgonje


Filmmaker: Abdullah Almalla

Film: “When it Rains”

Duration: 0:10:30

Synopsis: An incurable disease and the prospect of dying a long and painful death: This is what awaits Carlos, an artist who feels overwhelmed by a diagnosis that throws him completely off the track. He meets Marlen, a young stage actress who supports dying in dignity. They spend one summer together and finally, they make a momentous decision…

Writers: Susanne Merkel, Abdullah Rajab Almalla

Producer: SWR

Director: Abdullah Rajab Almalla


Filmmaker: Asaf Yecheskel

Film: “A Unicorn in Tel Aviv”

Duration: 0:20:00

Synopsis: A witty Tel Aviv comedy. Alonna, 28, tries to find herself in the big city despite her insistence to live offline. On the brink of giving up, the city unfolds its love and affection.

Writer/Producer/Director: Zohar Ballas


Filmmaker: Patrik Krivanek

Film: “Quiet Crossing”

Duration: 0:04:00

Synopsis: 45,000 sections of reinforced concrete – three tons each. Nearly 300 watchtowers, over 250 dog runs,20 bunkers. Sixty-five_ miles of anti-vehicle trenches—signal wire, barbed wire, beds of nails. Over 11,000 armed guards. A death strip of sand, well-raked to reveal footprints. 200 ordinary people shot dead following attempts to escape the communist regime.  96 miles of the concrete wall. Families divided, loved ones lost…  “Quiet Crossing is a strong emotional, political story filmed by the Film BA students at the University of Westminster/Westminster Film School (London). It is a 1967 story of East German students, opponents of the communist regime, who are trying to emigrate to West Germany hidden at the back of a food delivery truck. They must remain quiet at the time of arrival at the border crossing point, or they will be discovered and executed for their anti-political activities. Anna’s and Yans’s sleeping baby on board is a time bomb that can explode at any time, and something unexpected happens…”

Writer: Rik Hulme

Producer: Ella Eddy

Director: Patrik Krivanek


Filmmaker: Dean Marriott

Film: “Stolen”

Duration: 0:18:30

Synopsis: In the early 1960s, economic migration reversed between Argentina and Spain, with many Argentinians (and Spanish immigrants) moving to Spain to seek work.  As a teenager, Soledad Solberg moved with her parents to Madrid.  A talented pianist, she met her German husband-to-be, the composer and piano teacher, Heinrich Solberg. In 2008, Heinrich was diagnosed with terminal cancer, and his wish was to relocate to his place of birth, Berlin, which is where the short film takes place. Julia Thompson, adopted at birth by an American father and German mother, was raised bilingual in the USA.  She was adopted from Spain during the Franco era.  Her quest to find her biological parents takes her to Berlin. Inspired by the Stolen Babies Scandal, which took place in Spain during the Franco era, this bilingual German-Spanish short film brings ethics, religion, language and the exploitation of vulnerable women into question.  The choice of bilingual dialogue may be controversial but is used to highlight the linguistic displacement of the stolen children globally and the theft of their biological cultural identity.  The realization of this short film coincides with the current legal prosecution in Spain.  In June 2018, Dr. Eduardo Vela, a former gynecologist in Madrid, became the first person to go on trial for his involvement in Spain’s Stolen Babies Scandal.   

Writers/Producers/Directors: Dean Marriott


Kansas High School Films (watch from 1-1:43 p.m. Friday, April 23)

Filmmaker: Laurie Denk

Film: “Daydream”

Duration: 0:03:40

Synopsis: A student’s daydream in a class comes to life through his imagination (created with 3D animation) and brings color into his world.

Writers/Producers/Directors: Logan Bodenhamer, Adin Replogle


Filmmaker: Adler Moss

Film: “Hibakusha”

Duration: 0:11:12

Synopsis: A short documentary that tells the story of the causes and effects of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Utilizing audio recreations and rare photographs and videos, including the use of U.S. Military training reels to visually display the bombing of Hiroshima, this story is told as you have never seen it before.

Writer: Adler Moss

Producers & Directors: Adler Moss, John Schaefer


Filmmaker: Aiden Droge

Film: “Road to State – Washburn Rural High School Volleyball”

Duration: 0:04:00

Synopsis: A recap of the Washburn Rural Lady Blues second place finish at the 2019 Class 6A KSHSAA State Tournament

Director & Producer: Aiden Droge


Filmmaker: Adler Moss

Film: “BCTV: Endgame”

Duration: 0:23:11

Synopsis: The Bishop Carroll TV Broadcasting class faces its most dangerous challenge yet when their new broadcast is completely erased. The senior Class of 2020 takes the reins to save the broadcast, but in the process faces a dangerous journey through time and must reflect on the unavoidable and emotional end of their high school career. A film about bravery, retrospection, and the difficulties of leaving what has, for a time, been your entire life.

Writers: Adler Moss, William Paronto, George Walden

Producer: George Walden

Director: Adler Moss

Narrative Film Shorts (watch from 3:15-3:58 p.m. Friday, April 23)

Filmmaker: Michael Feld

Film: “40 Minutes Over Maui”

Duration: 0:13:14

Synopsis: For 40 minutes Jan. 13, 2018, the fate of the world hung in the balance for Larry and Penny… their Hawaiian vacation was ruined.

Writer(s): Steve Feld, Michael Feld, Josh Covitt

Producer(s): Brent McHenry, Nick Clifford

Director(s): Michael Feld, Josh Covitt


Filmmaker: Jerod Wood

Film: “New Medication”

Duration: 0:13:50

Synopsis: A psychological thriller about a young woman who is going through life changes. When she starts seeing things that aren’t there, she searches for answers.

Writer/Producer/Director: Jerod Wood


Filmmaker: Bryan Burton

Film: “PUSH the POINT”

Duration: 0:07:20

Synopsis: A musical short film set between the worlds of fandom and pop culture, PUSH THE POINT follows four online gamers through their squad-based mission. Harder than defeating the red team, however, is sticking together while trying to navigate toxicity, super-fandom, and the futility of having an argument on the internet.

Writer(s): Robert Calbimonte, Alex Koceja, Bryan Burton

Producer(s): Bryan Burton, Robert Calbimonte, Alex Koceja, Edison Hong, Morgan Keene

Director: Bryan Burton


Filmmaker: Emma Keehan

Film: “Ouroboros”

Duration: 0:08:01

Synopsis: One masked dancer threatens the cycle of pursued acceptance met by authoritative rejection when part of her facade falls away and she can truly see.

Writer: Nick Early

Producer(s): Emma Keehan, Andrew Harrington

Director: Emma Keehan


Films by Washburn University Alumni and Current Students (watch from 2:45-4:01 p.m. Thursday, April 22)

Filmmaker: Dylan Warrington

Film: Dark Picture

Duration: 0:03:19

Synopsis: “Dark Picture” a super short film depicting a symbolic adaptation of the dark turn one’s internal feelings could go while being isolated in one’s own home during the COVID-19 pandemic. A painter stuck in his home during the COVID-19 pandemic, sinks into darkness as his art piece is ruined.

Writer/Producer/Director: Dylan Warrington


Filmmaker: Neil Payne

Film: “Kings Boulevard”

Duration: 0:07:08

Synopsis: A satirical look at sexual harassment and inequality in Hollywood.

Writer: Marie D. Jones

Producer(s): Marvin Akanyi, Nadia Huselnikava

Director: Neil Payne


Filmmaker: Carlos Chavez

Film: “Artificial Love”

Duration: 0:02:23

Writer: Andrew Gill

Producer: Visual Poetry

Director: Carlos Chavez


Filmmaker: Josh Cannon

Film: “Defined by One’s Image: Topeka, KS”

Duration: 0:11:52

Synopsis: The City of Topeka, as told by its residents.

Producer(s) & Directors: Josh Cannon, John Burn


Filmmaker: Dylan Warrington

Film: “Delusional Friends”

Duration: 0:09:30

Synopsis: Two bellhop friends working at a hotel, living a delusional life as actors, find themselves unwittingly foiling the plans of a simple-nobody-husband, hiring a hitman, to kill his wife.  Watch the credits 😉

Writer & Director: Dylan Warrington

Producer(s): Morgan Musgrave, Jayne Boggs-Varney, Dylan Warrington


Filmmaker: Dylan Warrington

Film: “Homework Effectiveness Documentary”

Duration: 0:13:00

Synopsis: The American Education System is filled with many problems, one of the problems being homework. Many students feel traditional-based homework (writing papers, tests, reading, fill-in-the-blank, etc.) to be a boring or even ineffective learning tool, while others feel project-based homework (presentations, discussions, collaborations, real-world experiences, etc.) to be a better learning tool. Washburn student Dylan Warrington takes a journey to see if traditional-based homework or project-based homework is a better learning tool for students by interviewing fellow students, teachers, and other professionals.

Writer & Producer: Dylan Warrington

Producer(s): Dylan Warrington, Sota Yoshikawa


Filmmaker: Eriko Hiranoi

Film: “Miku -Cultures-“

Duration: 0:09:10

Synopsis: This is a documentary film about Miku’s challenge with her senior art exhibition through her passion for art with some difficulties in preparing the exhibition.

Producer: Eriko Hiranoi

Director(s): Eriko Hiranoi, Drew Dickes


Filmmaker: Francesca Kelley

Film: “REA – Rural Electrification Association”

Duration: 0:04:18

Synopsis: Learn the history behind Kansans discovering light in their own home.

Director & Producer: Francesca Kelley


Filmmaker: Jennifer Yi

Film: “Surprise”

Duration: 0:05:09

Synopsis: A man suspects his girlfriend of cheating, so he decides to follow her.

Writer/Producer/Director: Jennifer Yi


Filmmaker: Drew Dickes

Film: “Tell No One”

Duration: 0:07:46

Synopsis: A young car salesman, Tom, is stuck in a mundane routine of waking up at the same time every day and going to work at a car dealership.  But, soon his wife will realize Tom has a secret.

Writer & Director: Drew Dickes

Producer: Will Hartner


Filmmaker: Meredith Field

Film: “The Stray”

Duration: 0:02:09

Synopsis: This film is animated and produced in Adobe premier and Adobe animate. It is a story about a stray kitten finding his forever home.

Writer/Producer/Director: Meredith Christine Ballew Field

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