Each day this week, we're sharing one of the five documentary finalists in Vimeo's first-annual video contest, along with commentary from the program directors and judges. Today's featured finalist is Schlimazeltov! by The Light Surgeons. From superstition to religion, a Jewish community in London contemplates 'mazel,' or luck ... and the lack thereof. This visually poetic essay moseys along as we hear testimonials both funny and philosophical on what it means to believe in luck, chance and fate.
Lucy Walker, the filmmaker behind the acclaimed Devils Playground (2002), is one of the three judges of the Documentary category. This is what she has to say:
Food for thought of the most surprising, delicious and rare kind, this movie charmed us with its spirit of thoughtfulness and inquiry.
To extend the silly food analogy: Is a short film like a snack compared to the full meal of a feature-length movie? The perfect short film can be as satisfying, complete and memorable as the perfect snack ... And this one is particularly tasty and fun to think about.
This coming weekend, the Vimeo Festival and Awards will take place in New York City. A panel of 27 judges — including Vincent Laforet, M.I.A. and David Lynch — has narrowed over 6,500 submissions down to five finalists in each of nine categories, such as "narrative" and "experimental." Winners will be announced Oct. 9. There will also be one overall winner, who will receive a $25,000 grant to make a new film.
Who do you think should win? Check back for more videos and commentary.