May 31, 2012

Short Films Showcase: Today's Featured Shorts 5/30

The Short Films Showcase voting continues. Because we know you don't have time to watch all 25 videos at once (even though they're only 5 minutes each) we're featuring couple on the blog each day to help you get through them.

"Daily Commute" takes viewers on a ride through the mind of filmmaker Jason Graff during one of his meditation sittings. At the beginning, he seems a little unsettled—a blur of traffic lights and cars surround him as soon as he closes his eyes—but, if this in an honest insiders's look into Graff's mind during meditation, let's just say I'm more than a little jealous. He might not be able to focus, but his distractions look like a lot of fun—his playful, monkey mind take him back to surfing adventures, mountain bike trails, and a cabin in the snow. As the sitting continues, however, things start to slow down and nature imagery takes over. If my mind took me on a similar ride every time that I meditated, my practice wouldn't be so faltering.

I knew very little about chakras going into the short film "Chakra Meditation" by Donat Sperling, and I know very little about chakras coming out. (Aren't chakras associated with different parts of the body?) But, to the filmmaker's credit, I don't think he meant for the video to be educational. In the film's description, Sperling writes, "Chakra Meditation is a sensorial journey and guided meditation, in which we can discover our energetic nature and relax into a meditative state. Combining ancient wisdom and modern technology, the old ways with the new, the Chakra meditation video came into existence." Personally, I didn't discover my energetic nature or relax into a meditative state, but the film is certainly a sensorial journey. The music, colors, and movement of circles combine to create a captivating experience. Make sure you watch it full screen. "Chakra Meditation" in a word: trippy.

How do you strike a balance between movement and stillness? I appreciated "Dissolution," a short film by Matt Costanza because it led me to reflect on this question. It takes a look at the fluidity of the human body in motion, but it does this by showing us still shots of a body in movement—kind of like a flip book. Like "Chakra Meditation," "Dissolution" is best watched on the full screen setting.

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