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In the value of contemporary, short films have incomparable advantages over feature films. The short film´s uniqueness of being good at thinking on its feet makes it possible to capture an experimental and challenging current society, people, and their interests. Among this year’s entries, films focused on the idea and development, visual experiment, and pain that were not fully spoken stood out.
The works that expressed the problems of communication drew the most attention. These films tell the stories of seeking understanding in order to recognize and overcome the existence of a communication barrier among families, members of society, and lovers. The stories show the prudent theme that acceptance of the impossibility of complete understanding of others opens a door to listening to others, observing their actions, and holding each other’s hands. Characters writhe, conflict, and search for answers to close the communication gap by themselves.
Also, concerns of women and minorities in our society are covered as themes. Socially underprivileged protagonists draw the stories like sexual orientation, disability, family and community, human rights and human rights sensitivity, and sexual violence in films. The judges couldn’t help to sympathize with the directors’ thoughtful perspectives on these characters and stories. Many films try to capture the voices of minorities while keeping an ethical gaze within a 40-minute time limit. These attempts raised expectations for future Korean films.
In animated films, there are many works that match the work method and content. The animated films that received high praise from the judges were unpretentiously unfolded daily life using elaborate sound and strong eye-catching images. Experimental films challenge to deliver messages to an audience without dialogue. There were also works that reveal a seething conflict and critical mind through the horror genre. Some films are difficult to define in one genre. Among sci-fi and romantic comedy films are expressed with the scenery of COVID-19 or animated techniques.
Although it is described as a trend, each film has its own voice. The films are selected to provide abundant images and sound, unpredictable story development, carrying out their own color, and proper length and formats. Hope the JEONJU IFF will present a cinematic experience that will make you remember 2021 in the aesthetics of short films.

(The preliminary juries of Korean Competition for Shorts: KIM Mijo, SHIN Dongmin, LEE Dahyeh, LEE Eunsun, CHA Hanbi, and HUH Namwoong)

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