Where To Watch All The 2019 Oscar-Nominated Short Films

Photo: Courtesy of IMDb.
Keeping up with awards season is a time-consuming hobby. This year, there are eight films nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture, not to mention the five movies nominated in each of the Best Documentary Film, Best Foreign Film, and Best Animated Film categories. It would take at least a few weekends to watch all of the nominees (and not all of them are streaming yet).
That brings us to the joy of Oscar-nominated short films, all of which you can watch in a day. Short films are distinguished by feature films simply by their duration. The Academy defines short films as "an original motion picture that has a running time of 40 minutes or less, including all credits." Each year, 15 short films are nominated, five in the categories of Best Animated Short, Best Documentary Short Subject, and Best Live Action Short Film.
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This years' nominees might not make for a light-hearted binge-watch: Bilge Ebiri of The New York Times points out that four of the five Oscar-nominated live-action short films feature the theme of children in danger. The documentaries are equally bleak, ranging in subject matter from the refugee crisis to a rally in Nazi Germany to end-of-life care. The animated films, including one about an aspiring woman astronaut and the already-iconic Bao, will come as a balm to the overwhelming dark live action and documentary entries.
Watching these films won't take a long time. But where can you watch them? Beginning February 8, all the short films will be aired in theaters around the country, thanks to ShortsTV. The films will be shown in batches of categories. More theaters will be added weekly.
Would rather watch in your pajamas? No problem. Come February 19, the shorts will be available to download on iTunes, Google Play, and Amazon, and offered on Video on Demand through cable providers. Many are already streaming.
Essentially, there's no reason not to watch these masterful exercises in brevity. Here are all the movies you should add to your "To Watch" queue before the Oscars air on February 24, 2019.

Documentary Short Film Nominees

Black Sheep
Directed by: Ed Perkins and Jonathan Chinn
The Gist: Following a racist attack against a young Black man in London, Cornelius Walker's mother moves her family from London to Essex. In his new home, Cornelius finds himself surrounded by even more white racists. Unexpectedly, he ends up trying to become a part of their community. Watch it on The Guardian.
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End Game
Directed by: Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman
The Gist: Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco is a facility built to confront death. The 40-minute documentary focuses on San Francisco families coming to terms with death and illness, with the help of the palliative care specialists. Watch it on Netflix.
Lifeboat
Directed by: Skye Fitzgerald and Bryn Mooser
The Gist: In this visceral look at the migrant crisis, volunteers for a German non-profit head into the Mediterranean to save refugees whose boats have overturned in turbulent waters. Watch it on YouTube.
A Night at the Garden
Directed by: Marshall Curry
The Gist: This short and shocking documentary exposes the history of Nazi support in the United States. On February 20, 1939, more than 20,000 Americans attended a pro-Nazi rally at Madison Square Garden. Watch it on Vimeo.
Period. End of Sentence.
Directed by: Rayka Zehtabchi and Melissa Berton
The Gist: Women in a rural village outside of New Delhi, India gather to fight the stigma of menstruation.

Animated Short Film Nominees

Animal Behaviour
Directed by: Alison Snowden and David Fine
The Gist: What would animals talk about in therapy? Find out in Snowden and Fine's film. What we know from the trailer: Gorillas can't control their temper and praying mantises are rude.
Bao
Directed by: Domee Shi
The Gist: In this imaginative and tear-jerking meditation on motherhood, a mother saddened by her son leaving home is delighted when her dumpling comes to life, and is another child to raise. Buy it on YouTube.
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Late Afternoon
Directed by: Louise Bagnall and Nuria González Blanco
The Gist: An elderly woman with dementia takes a trip through her vivid childhood memories.
One Small Step
Directed by: Andrew Chesworth and Bobby Pontillas
The Gist: Move over, First Man. There's a new Oscar-nominated astronaut in the ceremony. Luna Chu dreams of going to the stars and her father encourages her every step of the way.
Weekends
Directed by: Trevor Jimenez
The Gist: In the wake of his parents' divorce, a little boy shuttles between his mom's apartment in the city and his father's new home in the country.

Live Action Short Film Nominees

Detainment
Directed by: Vincent Lambe and Darren Mahon
The Gist: This short film about a terrible crime that occurred in 1993 is garnering a lot of controversy. In 1993, two ten-year-old boys lured a toddler from a mall in England and killed him. This film is shaped from actual testimony.
Fauve
Directed by: Jeremy Comte and Marie Gracia Turgeon
The Gist: In this film, two unsupervised boys play a dangerous and aggressive game in an isolated surface mine. Watch it on Vimeo.
Margeurite
Directed by: Marianna Farley and Marie-Hélène Panisset
The Gist: An elderly woman forms a relationship with her nurse that allows her to process her past.
Mother
Directed by: Rodrigo Sorogoyen and María del Puy Alvarado
The Gist: At the start of this fast-moving 17-minute film, a mother gets a call from her young son at the beach. Soon into the conversation, she realizes something is wrong. His father disappeared. He's alone on the beach. The battery is getting low. Only she can save him.
Skin
Directed by: Guy Nattiv
The Gist: Troy didn't choose who his parents are – but his parents (played by Danielle Macdonald and Jonathan Tucker) are white supremacists. During a trip to the grocery store, a Black man smiles at Troy across the aisle, leading to a violent altercation. Skin is an unflinching look at forces of white supremacism still alive in this country. The harrowing movie will be turned into a full-length film by A24.

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