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Student Shorts

Student films from San Diego and around the world highlight topics and issues on everyone’s mind. Q&A with filmmakers after screening.
Category: Shorts

Full Details

86 min.

Q&A with filmmakers after screening


The Lightning Man

Director: Jonathan Goetzman

Producer: Bella Wadhwani

Cast: Jaco Pitchon, Carlos Barbouth, Jake Cherry, Skye Coyne, Janet Rodriguez

Synopsis: The Lightning Man explores the story of Rafi Cohen in 1973 Los Angeles, who struggles to come to terms with the closing of his barbershop. A barber-sonderkommando in the Treblinka death camp, Cohen deals with the guilt of being a survivor. The temple persistently reaches out to Rafi to join the Jewish community but his battle with God and his guilt keep him away. Through the temple's efforts and the passion of one young boy, Rafi is able to see the importance in his voice for not only the survival of the Jewish people but to embrace his identity.


Ghost Tape #10 

Director/Producer: Sean David Christensen

Synopsis: Created by the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War, "Ghost Tape #10" was one of many audio tapes engineered to psychologically intimidate and demoralize the North Vietnamese Army through its depiction of the Buddhist afterlife. By re-examining this weaponization of belief through the context of modern day Vietnamese and Vietnamese-American religious practice, reactions to this artifact of American propaganda lead to discussions of relationships between the living and the dead, and ask what truths, if any, still echo within this recording.


Yellow Slip

Director: Julia Elihu

Producer: Leslie Susman

Cast: Evelyn Menchaca, Graciela Valderrama, Sophia Soriano, Darla Michelle, Nate Johnson, Daniela Elihu

Synopsis: When Amelia, a gritty, hard working, young woman realizes that her undocumented mother and closest confidant, Mariana, might be in trouble with the authorities, she is abruptly confronted with the idea of a life on her own.



Director: Jesse Suchomel

Producer: William Simmons

Cast: Max Thayer, Nadine Kostine, Greg Couet, James C Burns, Magally Castellanos, Johnny Fortes

Synopsis: A veteran hit man named Leo drives his rusty Chevy through the bleak terrain of Nevada's desert. He is on a mission that was given to him by his mob boss Hunt, a mission that will end in the death of a young girl. After discovering the young girl was part of Hunt’s underage sex trafficking ring, Leo disobeys his orders in an attempt to atone for past sins. 



Directors: Maximilian Miesen, Reed Martin, Max Mereminsky, Gabriel Yung, Riley Scott, Noah Hecht

Producers: Bradley Kester, Andrew Norbeck

Cast: Joshua Golden, Jonathon Golden, Susan Golden 

Synopsis: A documentary about Joshua, an 18 year old rock climber diagnosed with autism, who has surpassed expectations despite challenges he has faced in his life.

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