Short 3 Feet

Though they have not been in the limelight much of late, Colombia has always been a strong soccer nation. The country is soccer mad. From cradle to grave. Cleverly, in this short film, which is about love of soccer, it is rather demurely the focal point.

Often there are challenges when it comes to going to school as a young person. Fitting in, sitting still and paying attention, finding friends….the list could go on. But when you live in a rural and rather poor part of Colombia, there are other things to add to the list. One would be keeping your shoes clean enough for the rather demanding headmaster (Luis Enrique Yanez – first film). Doubly tough when you are a soccer fanatic like 10-year-old Gonzalo (Maykol Santiago Capacho Perales – first film).

He is never without his beloved red and white soccer ball. His love gets him into trouble at school. Trouble as it results in his shoes being dusty/dirty. That does not go unnoticed by the strict headmaster. When he sees the state of Gonzalo’s shoes he holds him back from recess to keep him in to shine them.

While watching his classmates play soccer outside the window he sits beside polishing his shoes, Gonzalo vows to himself never to allow this to happen again. But even though he leaves his house the next morning with shoes that shine, getting to school with them in that state as he insists on chasing his soccer ball en route.

Having screened at 40 odd film festivals around the world and collecting 13 awards along the way, Short 3 Feet should be considered one of the stronger shorts of 2018.

Using both live action and animation to tell its tale, the film brings about the nostalgia of childhood no matter where you grew up. The feeling of just wanting to be free to do what you love, to play while adults seem to always be in the way with their silly rules. It brings to life those wonderful memories from childhood.

Special applause goes to the cast here as they are all newcomers. Never having acted before. They bring a level of realism and authenticity to the story.

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