Short Films for the Holidays (Ages 12+)

Short Films for the Holidays (Ages 12+)

Looking for some quality animation to keep your older kids busy during those colder days? Delve into this collection of five NFB favourites which explore the themes of relationships and growing up. It includes films from world-class animators like Theodore Ushev, Torill Kove, and Cordell Barker.

  • If I Was God...
    2014|8 min

    In this short animated film, a Grade 7 boy’s mind starts to wander while dissecting a frog in Biology class. What would you do if you suddenly found yourself charged with God-like powers? Would you use them for good? For bad? Perhaps a little of both? The possibilities seem endless. Oh to have the power to toy with life and death, to create monsters who can punish those who torment him daily, or better yet, to create that one perfect day with Lily, the love of his 12-year-old life!

    Drawing inspiration from the filmmaker’s own memories and using a variety of animation techniques, from traditional animation to stop-motion puppets and more, this darkly whimsical short explores the difficult gateway between childhood and adolescence, when the approaching power of adulthood is often mistaken for omnipotence.

    If I Was God is the latest offering from two-time Oscar®-nominated animator (The Cat Came Back, Strange Invaders) and long-time NFB collaborator Cordell Barker.

  • Sunday
    2011|9 min

    This Oscar®-nominated animated short is a magical tale about life as seen through the eyes of a child. In keeping with their Sunday tradition, after mass a family flocks to grandma and grandpa’s house, where the chaotic discussion soon begins to resemble a raucous gathering of crows on power lines. The local factory has shut its doors and, naturally, the adults can’t stop fretting about their money woes. On this particular grey Sunday, a young boy drops a coin on some nearby train tracks out of sheer boredom. Picking the coin up after a train has run over it, he discovers to his astonishment that an amazing transformation has taken place.

  • John and Michael
    2004|10 min

    This animated short pays tribute to two men with Down syndrome who shared an intimate and profoundly loving relationship that deeply affected the filmmaker. Narrator Brian Davis brings the characters to life with great sensitivity.

  • My Grandmother Ironed the King's Shirts
    1999|10 min

    This Oscar®-nominated animated film comes from Oscar®-winning filmmaker Torill Kove (The Danish Poet). It's a tall tale about her grandmother's life in Oslo, Norway, during World War II. Sharp and whimsical, her story combines her grandmother's tales with historical events and fantasy, showing how a cherished anecdote can come to acquire a mythical status. King Harald of Norway said, "I love the irony of this short."

    Still feeling mischievously rebellious? Buy the book from Firefly Books for more historical sabotage!