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Diary of a Suffolk Shorts reviewer

It’s surprising and inspiring

This year I have joined a group of about 25 reviewers to watch, grade and comment on a selection of short films submitted to Suffolk Shorts. There are 3 categories of films that will be considered for the official selection, which are screened at the festival. I am about half way through the films submitted so far, and I am surprised at how amazing and inspiring some of the films are. 

It is similar to being a fly on the wall …realising what society is ‘thinking’ at this time; post pandemic mental health really plays a part….influences like climate change are at the front as well as individual artistic endeavours. Film really is a tapestry of cultural and current opinion, and the selection so far is testament to that. 

Personal preferences

Kathy watching films

Myself, I lean towards the experimental, the arthouse, docs and animation, but I am enjoying the broad spectrum of abilities and genres. The student films are interesting, and if I am honest, are above the bar compared to my attempts at filmmaking over twenty years ago.

I am due to write a review on each film. I had been holding back, uncertain if the content could be seen by film directors or production but it seems that it’s beneficial to be VERY frank with comments so that the programming team can see how we have all responded to the films. I will be digging deeper and write what I see. Certainly other reviewers are doing so. 

FilmFreeway is an easy site to navigate, and once you are in the flow it’s quite easy to watch one film after the other. It is a privilege to be included and to view these films; so much hard work goes into each one, and I am looking forwards to the remaining films. Last year there were 65 award categories and additional commendations were given to individuals whose work stood out to the juries. This year the festival has scaled down to three categories in one day, which gives us all the chance to watch all those entered; student shorts, narrative shorts and the local category – East Anglian shorts.

The Suffolk Shorts team really stressed how important it is to them to have a diverse range of reviewers on board. They are still open to applications if you think you’d like to join us. You can email


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