Short Film of the Day: ‘Dissonance’

April 7, 2020

Till Nowak’s Dissonance (2015) is a jaw-dropping blend of animation and live action that is pure cinematic genius. It’s not hyperbole to say it’s the best short film I’ve ever seen. And the only excuse I can think of for why it didn’t win the Oscar is the Academy (and festival judges, who often determine which shorts qualify for the Oscars) didn’t know which category to put it in: animation or live action.

I first saw the film in the “Let’s Deutsch” program (named to honor both David Bowie and German filmmaking) at the 2016 Florida Film Festival. It’s the same program that featured another 5-star film, Pitter Patter Goes My Heart, which was my Short Film of the Day on April 4.

For more on the film, including a cast list and details of Nowak’s creative process, which took seven years, visit Wikipedia. And for an index of all my Short Film of the Day selections, go here.

(If you have OCD, you might notice that this version is about a minute shorter than the theatrical release, which was closer to 17 minutes. Nothing has been cut, though; the film simply appears to have been sped up slightly, with faster end credits.)