The concept is pretty clever. The producer had the idea that Americans tend to only see movies made by Americans and have no idea how many great directors exist in other countries. So for both films he set up this challenge:
1. He hired 26 directors per film.
2. Each director was given $5,000.
3. They were then told to make a movie that was no longer than six minutes.
4. Every film had to have at least one death in it.
5. They were all randomly given a letter and that letter had to be the first letter of the title of their film.
The results are fascinating. Of the 57 directors (Because the Soska sisters are two people) each one had a different take on what a short film about death could be. Some are short horror movies. Some are cool animated films. Some are about the loss of loved ones.
Overall the films are very uneven. But how could they not be? If nothing else when you are seeing, say a short film from a tiny Asian country there are apt to be cues you are missing. And with 57 directors not all are going to hit the mark.
But it's still fun. Because even when you realize a particular film is not to your taste you only have to deal with it for six minutes max (and a bunch of the films are only two or three minutes long.)
The second film is better than the first - but I think that's because the 27 directors of the second film had a chance to see the first film and figure out what works and what doesn't work.
All in all they are very interesting. I think my favorite is a South Korean film where the premise is the Zombie apocalypse has happened, the zombies have won and now the zombies are putting the remaining humans on trial for killing zombies during the initial outbreak. The zombies refer to themselves as the "aparantly dead."
Least favorite was in the first film where the director films himself bitching about getting the letter "Q" and then tries to film himself shooting a duck only to have the duck kill him.
At the end of the day we really liked it (even though some of the films made no sense, the ones that are good are really good.) And we are going to look up the directors of the films we liked and see if we can find English languge versions of their films.