The festival for short film Go Short in Nijmegen is not quite over yet, but last night the winners of the various competitions were announced at the Award Show in LUX. The award for best short fiction went to Incident by a Bank by Swedish director Ruben Östlund. He took a failed 2006 bank robbery as the starting point for a reconstruction in the form of one uninterrupted shot by a camera that was, as it were, accidentally at the scene.
It is precisely because of this dry, sober and almost experimental approach that this extremely precise choreography of coincidences has a surprising effect. Amazement and curiosity vie for precedence, as you see with the passers-by wondering what exactly those two clumsy scooter riders with their masks and plastic bags are up to. The beauty is that this quasi-trivial 12-minute snapshot is at the same time a subtle metaphor for our world in which all sorts of things happen without us having much control over them. Coincidentally or not, the award-winning film in the documentaries section evokes something similar, though this time what is shown is real. Virgil Vernier records in Pandore the working night of the doorman of a Parisian nightclub. Without blinking an eye and always calm and confident, this one knows exactly which of the sometimes troublesome customers he lets in and which he does not. People skills, or is his judgement completely arbitrary after all? The jury rightly saw here a beautiful metaphor for the arbitrariness of society. The overview of all prize winners can be found at www.goshort.nl For those who missed the festival: the best of Go Short will tour film theatres in Rotterdam, Arnhem, Groningen, Maastricht, Eindhoven, Utrecht and Amsterdam from 21 March. Leo Bankersen