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Lubar Auditorim
Milwaukee Art Museum

14th​​ MKE Short Film Festival



Award given Opening Night

​​2012 Festival Film

Anima Mundi

This experimental piece combines thousands of individual images of flowers, both wild and cultivated, to create a unique, fluid aesthetic, celebrating the beauty of the natural world. 

Session 1:  Friday 11/9 5:15pm (Ages 16 and up.)

Naagahaan, Zinat (Suddenly Zinat) (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Navid Nikkhah Azad (Iran)

A decisive phone call changes the lives of three women.


A Pilgrim's Journal (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Anthony Presti (MKE)

On his way to thanksgiving dinner, a politician wrestles with a recent election loss as well as an unforeseen event which challenges his morality.


Anima Mundi

Directed by Katherine Balsley (MKE)

"Anima mundi,” a latin phrase meaning “spirit of the world,” has been a fundamental principle of philosophical thought for centuries, representing the vital life force that animates all matter in the universe. This experimental piece combines thousands of individual images of flowers, both wild and  cultivated, to create a unique, fluid aesthetic, celebrating the beauty of the natural world. All images were taken at the Schlitz Audubon Center in Bayside, Wisconsin. and the Boerner Botanical Gardens in Hales Corners.


Somewhere In Between
Directed by Kelly Bronikowski (MKE)

As he was, as he is. A portrait of my dad and an attempt on my part to encompass ones life.


My Peach

Directed by Vito Valenti (MKE)

A young couple are excited to attend an upscale wedding in Chicago, on the way here, they stop to visit an uncle. He is happy to see them but they remain largely unaware that he has concerns of his own.


The Periodic Table Table (World Premiere)

Directed by Kirk Zamieroski & Adam Dylewski (D.C.)

Some people collect stamps. Wolfram Research co-founder and author Theo Gray collects elements. Step into his office, and you'll see a silicon disc engraved with Homer Simpson, a jar of mercury, depleted uranium shells and thousands of other chemical artifacts. But his real DIY masterpiece is the world's first 'periodic table table. Within this masterfully constructed table-top lay samples of nearly every element element known to man, minus the super-radioactive ones.


Q/A with attending filmmakers will follow



​​2012 Festival Film

Soul Chamber

The surrealist tale of a father who becomes corrupted as he betrays his daughter.

​​2012 Festival Film

The Op Shop

It came in a box. No name. No job description.

Session 2:  Friday 11/9 7pm, OPENING NIGHT EVENT!

(Ages 16 and up.)

Soul Chamber (World Premiere)

Directed by Mark G.E. (MKE)

A surrealist tale of a father who becomes corrupted as he he betrays his daughter. Removing her soul, he places it in a chamber and displays it and her doll-like body for profit throughout the countryside. 


For the daughter it is a journey of becoming herself and rising above betrayal through forgiveness.


White Blood (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Khayam Abdullayev & Emeddin Aiyev


A nomadic family whose way of life has been destroyed and a wife’s resourcefulness in seeking to realize her husband’s dying wish. The message is that there is always hope.


Nostalgia (World Premiere)

Directed by Jared Stepp (MKE)

Four years after watching her husband slip away in a hospital bed, Anita is trying to move on with her life by selling boxes of his old things at a local antique store. After coming across a crumpled wedding photo and a box of old LPs, Anita impulsively purchases a record player to revel in her nostalgia. To her shock, playing the couple’s favorite song conjures up more than just memories – it also brings back the spirit of her husband for one last dance. But will she allow the desire to relive her past to destroy her life in the present? 


Devil's Day Out (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Patrik Beck (MKE) 

The Devil is teaching his son how to drive a car, but the son resists. The Devil needs to convince his son of the importance of image. 


The Op Shop (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Lee Rogers (Australia) 

It came in a box. No name. No job description. Just a strange donation that three women at an op shop were determined to sell for $3.50. But then…and then again…and once more…they unlock the mystery.


The Water Street Experiment (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Darren Alexander Cole (MKE)

This educational, live Documentary that follows Elvis Thao and his band (The Creatives) on their 1year and ½ musical journey into sound as he forms his new band, and seeks to accomplish the making of his newest and most current album project “The Water Street Experiment”. In this viewing you will experience live in-studio sessions and rehearsals, along with artist and producer interviews plus shows and all the struggles and accomplishments that come with the territory. Engage with us on the life and times of The Creatives..




Q/A with attending filmmakers will follow.


White Wind

by Dan Wilson and Brooke Maroldi.

WW Rick at River.jpg

Sprawled at the edge of dairy farm country, a primordial marsh shelters countless endangered species, including a burgeoning whooping crane population. Sam ventures into the marsh with his camera. Although the area seems deserted, Sam has several unnerving encounters with two strange men. As they grow increasingly threatening, Sam simply tries to return to his car and leave the marsh. 

Has he stumbled upon a conspiracy that threatens the marsh, its inhabitants, and even his own life? Sam becomes so unhinged that he can no longer tell the difference between what he has captured with his camera or conjured with his mind.


Starring: Brian James McGuire, Rick Fresca and Jay Hoard.


White Wind will be a special presentation during the 

14th Annual Milwaukee Short Film Festival on 

Friday November 9th at the Lubar Auditoriun, Milwaukee Art Museum.

Session 4:  Saturday 11/10 1pm (Ages 16 and up.)




by Your Mother Is Productions

Sibling Rivalry

by Traveling Lemur Productions

Until Death

by Flip Eleven Creative

The Deliverist

by Blackbox Visuals

Super Villain Rehab

by AI Crazy Ranch

Preparation, Hard Work Sacrifice

by Green Beans Productions


by Gross & Difficult Productions


by Inside Outsider Productions

Something Borrowed

by Electric Dragon


Fix Anything Shop

by Cross Word Films


by Moleskin Productions


Life's A Beach

by Art Institute of WI- Team One


Telepathic Virgins from Mars

by The Back Burner

Session 5: Saturday 11/10 3:15pm  (Ages 16 and up.)

Promises (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Craig A. Knitt (WI)

After a terrible fight, Maria and Frank reach a point in their relationship where everything will change. Maria does not deal well with guilt and she hopes Frank will not forget the things he's promised her. Frank has problems of his own that could keep him from making the right decisions.

SOLSTICE (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Megan Monday & Brijetta Hall Waller (WI) 

SOLSTICE captures the unique and revelatory experience of Madison, Wisconsin's annual summer solstice celebration. From a quiet morning assembling a bonfire of recycled wood to a family - friendly giant puppet parade celebrating biodiversity, to a flame throwing, drum beating, fiery climax, SOLSTICE vividly chronicles this artistic and community- inspired celebration of the longest day of the year.


S T R E T C H (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Arturo Cubacub (Chicago)

" I stretched my mind so open that I felt a crack.' This short subject piece is a sensual representation of an internal transformation process catalyzed by the shedding of one's former identity. Featuring the electronic ballad, 'S T R E T C H' by Sarah Weis.


Good News, Oklahoma! (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Doug Hannah (L.A.) 

A satire about a well-intentioned liberal who gets fed up with salacious local media and creates her own show dedicated to good news, inadvertently paving a path of destruction that undermines everything she stands for.


An Cluiche (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Cathal O Cuaig (Ireland)

A short tale of a young man who supports his football team more than his girlfriend. Aidan has just managed to get a ticket for the most important game of the season when he realizes that he has a date with his girlfriend. What will he choose?


Viscosity (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Paul von Stoetzel (MN)

Adapted from established crime writer Jedidiah Ayres short story of the same name, the film follows three men after bar close who begin telling various stories of their early misadventures in masturbation as they become progressively more drunk.


A Perfect Match

Directed by Matthew Huebsch (MKE) 

A mockumentary done for the 2011 48 hour film project. Winner of "Best Film", Best Actor", "Best Actress" and "Audience Choice".


Choreography for Plastic Army Men (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by David Fain (L.A.)

A Stop-motion animated piece starring a variety of plastic army men strutting their stuff to the instrumental track 'Ohayoo Ohio' by the band 'Pink Martini'. Shot in the film maker's garage during various bouts of unemployment.  



Q/A with attending filmmakers will follow.

2012 Festival Film

Choreography for Plastic Army Men

An animated music video I created to an instrumental track by the band "Pink Martini".

2012 Festival Film

Choreography for Plastic Army Men

An animated music video I created to an instrumental track by the band "Pink Martini".

2012 Festival Film

Choreography for Plastic Army Men

An animated music video I created to an instrumental track by the band "Pink Martini".

Session 6:  Saturday 11/10 5pm Ages 16 and up.

​​2012 Festival Film


The Mars ice cap is melting, terraforming the Red Planet.

​​2012 Festival Film

Searcy County

A short doc about Searcy County's livestock auction by Noam Osband.

​​2012 Festival Film

Moon Attic

There's a man in a suit and a tie. At night he goes into his attic and finds that it is the Moon.

Adirondack (World Premiere)

Directed by Carlo Treviso (Wheaton, IL)

The Mars ice cap is melting, terraforming the Red Planet. Brave scientists embark on the adventure of a lifetime in an attempt to discover why. They determine that the best way to accomplish this mission is to send the first manned dog sled team to explore the Martian arctic. 

Searcy County (World Premiere)

Directed by Noam Osband (AK)

This short film depicts the little-known and unusual world of the Searcy County Livestock Auction in Marshall, Arkansas.


Nowhere and Everywhere

Directed by Giorgi Mrevlishvili (MKE)

A man tries to untie the rope tied to him. Every time he unravels the rope the new one appears. Finally he decides to follow it to find the end. The rope leads to nowhere and therefore everywhere.


Old Country Lullaby (World Premiere)

Directed by Marc Kornblatt (Madison)

Packing up the last boxes as they prepare to sell their home, a father and daughter have trouble leaving the premises. Jules, sitting on the floor in his daughter's empty bedroom, can't remember a certain lullaby he used to sing to her when she was a baby. It may be a small matter to Mira, but her dad learned the niggun (wordless melody) from his grandfather, and singing the tune in its entirety strikes him as a significant way of remembering and holding onto his past as he himself grows older.



Now Playing (World Premiere)

Directed by Patrick Metcalf (Chicago)

Joe Fremont's job at the Buena Vista Palms Cinema has gotten about as stale as the popcorn at the concession stand. That is, until Joe's dream girl, Iris, starts working at the same movie theater. Joe imagines himself in a series of films in an attempt to muster the courage to ask Iris out. Will Joe face his fears and get his Hollywood ending? 



Directed by Melissa Musante

Our society places all kinds of restrictions on girls at a very young age. Expectations of how women should look, act, etc. At some point women get wise, and let it all go and in doing so find pure joy.


Nach Hause (Back Home) (World Premiere)

Directed by Janos Menberg (Switzerland)

Vincent wants to go home to persuade his wife to come back to him. His Alzheimer, however, does not make it easy for him as everything is not as it appears in his world.


Lifestyles of the Rich & Fabulous (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Jonathan Browning (L.A.)

This short comedic film is a send up of an 80's & 90's Television icon ('Robin', played by Paul Dooley) telling his life story to a reluctant psychiatrist, played by Martin Mull.


Moon Attic (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Nathan Brue (Chicago)

There's a man in a suit and a tie. At night he goes into his attic and finds that it is the Moon.

Q/A with attending filmmakers will follow.

Session 5: Saturday 11/10 3:15pm  (Ages 16 and up.)

Until Death

Directed by Kyle Buckley (MKE)

When a romantic-at-heart rejects her sinister suitor’s proposal, she finds herself trapped inside his twisted mind—where the line between love and violence blurs at survival.


The Best Present (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Craig A. Knitt (WI)

This film is a heartfelt holiday tale with a slightly dark twist.

Peekaboo (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Damien Power (Australia)

On the train home from the Easter Show, an over-tired little girl is hyped-up by a stranger, who plays a game of peekaboo with her, until her mother begins to feel disturbed by the interest he’s showing. A short time later, the girl disappears in a car park and her desperate mother searches. 

A glimpse of the man from the train fires her imagination, with devastating consequences.

view film here:

Missed Connections

by Susan Kerns & Kara Mulrooney (MKE)

Missed connections become connections made in this romantic comedy based on personal ads. Featuring Busby Berkeley-inspired dancers and a fanciful score from the tomorrows of yesterday, 'Missed Connections' transports viewers to a space where dreams of love come alive!

Split Time (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Fabrice Bracq (France)

A man and a woman in their mid-thirties. Attractive, single and day-dreamer, they cross each other a million times without ever meeting. Yet, they are meant to be together.

Love and Germophobia (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Tyler Spindel (L.A.) 

If your girlfriend had the flu, would you still kiss her? What about if she might have viral Meningitis? For David (TJ Miller), the answer is simple. Absolutely not. Unfortunately, David's girlfriend (Kelly Stables) doesn't see it this way.

Underpass (World Premiere)

Directed by John Lindquist (Sweden)

On an ordinary night an ordinary women ends up in an extraordinary and traumatic situation.

Johnny & Die Leichtigkeit (Johnny & The Lightness)

(World Premiere)

Directed by Steffen Boseckert (Germany)

Do you remember the guy who dressed in black for the poor and beaten-down? This story is about one of these guys he wrote about.

Johnny used to be one cool kid but for a while his deep thoughts discourage him from approaching the unknown lady he fell in love with. He gets angry about his desperate situation and grabs a pen to distract himself.


Scenen (Act 1 Scene 1) (Milwaukee Premiere)

Directed by Hans Montelius (Sweden)

A director and playwright battles his inner demons of jealousy as he tries to write a play for his girlfriend and his brother, but as the writing and rehearsals progress the demons take over.

Q/A with attending filmmakers will follow.

After the awards are handed out there will be a

special presentation of.


Yellow Hill: The Stranger's Tale (World Premiere)

Directed by Ross Bigley (MKE)

A Stranger (Bai Ling) is searching for her father. She encounters violence, and silence, and what the Stranger learns shakes her to her very core.

Yellow Hill: The Stranger's Tale is a story of regret, lost time with a parent that's served up with a healthy dose of action and revenge.

Q and A will follow presentation with

Bai Ling and cast and crew.

​​2012 Best Wisconsin Film

Missed Connections

Missed connections become connections made in this romantic comedy based on personal ads.

​​2012 Artistic Acheivement

Split Time

A man and a woman in their mid-thirties. Attractive, single and day-dreamer, they cross each other a million times without ever meeting. Yet, they are meant to be together.


Love and Germophobia

By Tyler Spindel. Won Best Film, Audience Favorite and Best Ensemble.

​​2012 Festival Film

Yellow Hill: The Stranger's Tale 

Western shot on location in South Dakota


Session 6:  9:15 MIFS FEATURE FILM

GRETEL by Tom Muschitz

Produced by Tom Muschitz & Anthony Wood.

Gretel, a Wisconsin film shot in and around the hills of the State's Driftless Region, is a dark fable of survival and madness.

Produced by Milwaukee native and editor Anthony Wood and Tom Muschitz, "Gretel" puts an eerie, contemporary spin on the original tale of "Hansel and Gretel", as two young children struggle to make their way out of a vast and threatening wilderness.

​The film features local actors Sean McKenna, Edy Cullen, Tom Lodewyck, Karim Patterson, Nikki Farce and Tom Crawford, and stars Maya and Thomas E. Muschitz, and features a great lineup of music from Wisconsin artists.

2012 Sponsors


Third Coast Digest

North American Camera


Boardgame Barrister

Trophy Athletic

WUWM 89.7

Beans and Barley

Sven's Cafe

Your Health Stylists


Voline Garage

Kara Mulrooney, Tyler Spindel & Susan Ke
Bai Ling with filmmakers Susan Kerns & K
Bai Ling hugs Best Film winner, Tyler Sp

The Winning Films:

On Saturday Nov 11th the awards were handed out at the end of the juried selection, film star Bai Ling was on hand to give out the awards.

Love and Germophobia
Directed by Tyler Spindel

2nd Place/Honorary Mention
Scenen (Act 1 Scene 1)
Directed by Hans Montelius


Best Wisconsin Film:
Missed Connections
by Susan Kerns & Kara Mulrooney

Best Director:
Damien Power

Best Ensemble
Love and Germophobia

Best Actor
Milton Welsh
Johnny & Die Leichtigkeit  


Best Actress
Joannaa Tschig (Scenen)

 Artistic Acheivement
Split Time
Directed by Fabrice Bracq

2012 Judges:

Robert K. Elder is a journalist,author, film columnist and the founder of Odd Hours Media, LLC.  Pulitzer-winner Studs Terkel calls Elder “a journalist in the noblest tradition” in his introduction to Elder’s book, Last Words of the Executed. Dead Man Walking author Sister Helen Prejean called it, “a dangerous book.” Last Words of the Executed received rave reviews in The Economist, Harper’s Magazine, and The New York Review of Books,among many other outlets. The New Yorker called it, “…A harrowing portrait of our justice system.”

​Praise for Elder’s 2011 book The Film That Changed My Life came from the Chicago Tribune’s Michael Phillips, who called the book, “A great and provocative read…it’s addictive.” Film critic Leonard Maltin also said, “You’ll havea hard time putting this book down.”

Elder is also the editor of “John Woo: Interviews,” the first authoritative chronicle of the filmmaker’s life, legacy and career. He has also contributed to books on poker, comic books and film design. A former member of the Chicago Film CriticsAssociation, Elder has taught film classes at Facets Film School.

Dan Laske: Recognizing the importance of Arts and Culture to local economic development and over all quality of life, Dan Laske founded the Southeastern Wisconsin Arts Guild in 2010. Dan developed S.W.A.G as afoundational resource to help promote growth in the arts and cultural communities, in any economic climate, through expanded relationships with stakeholders.

Today, the Southeastern WI Arts Guild is a highly regarded partner for arts and business organizations that seek to expand theiraudience, promote their programs, and develop strategic ties with individuals, non-profits and businesses throughout the region. As its head, Dan is apassionate community builder and arts advocate and thrives on introducing new audiences to the great
arts and cultural attractions of southeast Wisconsin.

Jeffrey James Ircink has worked in theatres and film in Milwaukee, Cedar Rapids, Iowa City and LosAngeles. Favorite roles include Tom in THE GLASS MENAGERIE, Jack in JACKAND JILL, Mickey/Narrator in BLOOD BROTHERS, Martin/The Old Man in FOOL FOR LOVE and Space Punk in STARMITES. Jeff’s original plays have taken him to Belfast, Sydney, Manhattan, Seattle, Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Dayton, Bel Air, and Milwaukee. Among his written work for the theatre: Stan’s Addiction, Chromosome 21, How ToKill A Boy, Reveille!, A Promiscuous Rape, A Sigh & A Grunt, Jesus Pushed AGrocery Cart, Billy Balfoor Wants An Apology (short film in post-production in Australia) and The Bed. The short film, PASS THE SALT, PLEASE, anadaptation of Jeff's award-winning, 10-minute play, has been screened in 32 film festivals around the world, including England, Poland, Serbia, Australia, China, Spain, New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Milwaukee and Austin. It wasawarded a Jury Prize at the 2011 Palm Springs ShortFest, a Special Jury Prizeat Cinequest Film Festival (San Jose) 2012, a Gold Remi Award at WorldFest/Houston 2012 and the Golden Horn/Audience Favorite at The Really Funny Horny Goat International Short Film Festival 2012 (Milwaukee). He lives in an “original” in Greendale, WI. Read his Twitter bio –

Timothy Lonsdale grew up in Manitowoc, writer/director Timothy Lonsdale considers himself a Wisconsin native. After three years as a radio communications sergeant with the U.S. Army Special Forces (Green Beret), he received a B.A. and a B.S. from the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Three years in Dallas lead to an M.F.A. in Theatre (Acting) from Southern Methodist University, work in the Dallas TV series, the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas, as well as radio and TV commercials and a Midwest tour playing Dickinson in 1776.

After moving to New York, Lonsdale was accepted into the Directors Guild of America Training Program. A member of the DGA for 25 years, he has worked as an Assistant Director for scores of directors including Martin Scorsese, Barry Sonnenfeld, M. Night Shyamalan and several Emmy/DGA Award winners. He has directed for Charmed (Aaron Spelling and Warner Bros.) and is attached to direct a feature screenplay that he has written.

Significant production credits as an Assistant Director include: Hudson Hawk, Lost in Yonkers, Species, Charmed, Ghost Whisperer, The District, Eli Stone, Pushing Daisies, and most recently, four seasons on My Boys for Sony/TBS. And Comedy Centrals's Kroc.

Jason Buss co-founded the Wildwood Film Festival in 2001 and the event has been “Celebrating Wisconsin Film Talent” ever since. The 12th event is set for March 16th at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center in Appleton. Jason attended college in Minnesota and Wisconsin although his film background is self-taught. Most of his knowledge is drawn from the over 500 independent short films he has screened for the festival, the projects that he has been a part of, combined with his personal favorite

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