To hear it from Salon‘s Andrew O’Hehir, the two most likely winners of the Best Live Short Film Oscar are Jochen Alexander Freydank’s Toyland (i.e., this year’s Holocaust contender) and Elizabeth Marre and Olivier Pont‘s Manon on the Asphalt.
A 13-minute long World War II-era drama, Toyland is about a German mom having a panic about whether her missing son might have unintentionally left with the Silversteins, her neighbors, on a train trip to “Toyland.” O’Hehir calls it “the obvious choice to take home the award,” especially given that there’s a “twist at the end…that will break your heart.
Manon on the Asphalt, he says, is “arguably the most risky and adventurous film on the list…a miniature, more Parisian and even cuter version of Crash” that is either “heartfelt and affecting or trivial and prepackaged.” Nonetheless, “a strong contender to take the prize.”
These and other nominated shorts will be playing in various high-culture burghs starting this Friday, 2.6. Magnolia Pictures and Shorts International are the responsible booking parties.