Short of the Week

New Boy

The new kid in class looks different—he’s from Rwanda—and when the other kids start to tease him, it calls up memories of a violent past.

Well, I’ll be. Usually live-action shorts are more difficult to find online, and ever since Shorts International and iTunes stepped into the picture the live-action Oscar nominees have virtually never been able to be played for free. But New Boy, the splendid Irish entry from director Steph Green, was courageous enough to give it a try. I wish I had found this earlier so we could have posted it before Sunday’s ceremony. Thanks a lot loyal readers! I know one of you knew about this. You know, if you come across something cool, you should drop us a line. We’ll be sure to give you love! Of the printed variety at least. Well I guess we don’t print…a shoutout then? K.

As for the film, TrailerAddict got the scoop and describes the short film thusly, “in this live-action short – adapted from Roddy Doyle’s 2005 short story of the same name that originally appeared in McSweeney’s Quarterly Concern – a Rwandan immigrant struggles to fit in socially over the course of his first day at an Irish school.”

TrailerAddict does the film justice, as the encode is gorgeous, really showing off the nice DOF camera-work in the film. The lighting and color-correction work during the Rwandan flashback sequences is stunning as well. Small surprise I suppose that an Oscar-nominated film is technically brilliant. What about the story? Pretty conventional. New boy gets bullied, and just from that first line I think you can fairly accurately predict the story arc from there. Olutunji Ebun-Cole is a good looking kid, but plays the young immigrant in a very stoic and closed off manner, which makes it difficult for the viewer to connect with. Still, he’s got a great smile. If you haven’t watched it yet, watch it now! also check out a Q&A with the director.

Co-Founder of Short of the Week, Sondhi lives in Brooklyn working as a Curator for Vimeo. Follow his musings on online video, direct distribution and branded content: @jasondhi.
  • Jason Sondhi

    In interestingly enough, it seems we have Liberty Mutual to thank for New Boy being online.

  • Andrew S Allen

    This looks like a nice program. It’s also a good model for how a large corporation can strengthen their brand image and help filmmakers at the same time.

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  • Jamski

    Loved this simple, beautiful film. Very odd film write up above, which didn’t explain the film at all.

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