2021 Festival Complete
By Donation
2021 Festival Complete
2021 Festival Complete

14 short films, including 5 by Vancouver Island-based directors, have been selected for the 16th annual Vancouver Island Short Film Festival (VISFF), streaming live online from Nanaimo on July 23 and 24, 2021.

The final lineup, chosen by the VISFF Selection Committee from among 72 submissions, features 9 films from Canada and entries from the United States, Mexico, Iran, Japan, China. The films span a diverse range of genres and subjects, from documentaries and dramas to comedies and unique animations.

The selected films have been split into two lineups which will be screened live online and available to watch for 3 days following the screenings, with tickets sold on a pay-what-you-can basis. Both screenings will feature Q&A sessions with the filmmakers, and Saturday evening’s event will be followed by the 2021 Awards Ceremony.

Past films screened at the festival can be found here. The 2021 festival was made possible thanks to a grant from the BC Arts Council.



The Blue Bed

Alireza Kazemipour - Iran
Drama (14:10)
Zahra is a middle-aged woman who visits a temporary marriage agency and signs up to have a young wor...

Excluded by Design

Simon Madore & Gabriel Tougas - Toronto & Winnipeg
Documentary (3:55)
Writer and community organizer Dave Meslin thinks that bad public notices are hurting our democracy ...

Cool Affections

Josh Terry-Brand - Victoria, BC
Comedy (8:20)
A melancholic man has a turbulent relationship with his refrigerator.

All-In Madonna

Arnold Lim - Victoria, BC
Drama (12:40)
When 17-year-old Maddie attends public school for the first time, she discovers dark secrets about h...

Ohrwurm (Earwig)

Vaughn and Connor Gaston - Victoria, BC
Drama/Surreal (13:40)
An ex-Stasi informant, holed up in her apartment, has her world upended when her estranged son arriv...

Before the Beauty is Gone

Mackai Sharp - Comox, BC
Documentary (13:58)
An unfortunate reality: our fish are disappearing. Not our Salmon or our Halibut, but those will soo...


Sohee Hong - Mill Bay, BC
Drama (7:32)
A short coming of age dramatic film about an Asian girl facing a subtle prejudice in her class in Ca...

Gyoro Goes To The Theatre

Shoichi “David” Haruyama - Japan
Musical/Animation (3:31)
Covid-19 has shuttered theaters everywhere. This film was made as an ode to the power of the theater...


Jay Kamal - Burnaby, BC
Drama (14:30)
12-year old Samir must come to terms with the tragedy of his father’s death while fulfilling his r...


Michael Joseph McDonald, Joe Bluhm & Nick Herd - Montreal
Animation (5:32)
Freebird is the coming-of-age story of a boy with Down Syndrome who learns to navigate the world wit...

Rent Do

Gavin Michael Booth - Verdun, QC
Comedy (14:51)
Rent Do follows Rich, Winnie and Pete, roommates and reluctant best friends. When each one is uncere...

Son of the Wind

XU Qi - China
Magical-Realist Fantasy (9:56)
The fateful encounter at a wind farm in Inner Mongolia prairie makes a lonely young watchman fall in...


Brian C O’Malley - Greenville, RI, United States
Animation (6:21)
A young boy tragically loses both his parents and is forced to grow up fast, learning from his nomad...

If I Were President

Andrea Arteaga Cote & Andrei Ramos Puerto - Mexico
Documentary (8:05)
The women of Tahdziú, Yucatán speak about their right to vote as indigenous women, they demand to ...