Cinema and Television

Short film

When we refer to audiovisual production, where through it different contents are produced for the audiovisual media, mainly for cinema and television, the short film, popularly known on television as short, is an audiovisual production that reaches a duration of more than thirty minutes, although it is worth mentioning that its traditional duration is located between eight and thirty minutes.

What is a short film?

A short film is an audiovisual production that is mainly characterized by its short duration and because it also deals with innovative issues, which are already a little worn or have a different language.

Definition of short film

We can define a short film as a film or a film effort in which the duration never exceeds 30 minutes, and which can have a minimum duration of 5 minutes. Also known by the name of short, is a very important part for all those who want to start their lives as new filmmakers, as it is very important because it allows them to put into practice all their skills as future producers. Many of the big film producers started making simple short films, until they settled in the place they enjoy today.

Characteristics of a short film

The main characteristics of a short film are the following:


At the beginning of the short films, these were seen as documentary type, and with time, they were also leaning in the area of fiction. At that time, the duration practically depended on the size of the recording roll, which was generally no longer than 10 minutes. By means of the editing they were able to make a little longer of time.


To talk about the history of short films we must go back to the beginnings of cinema as an art, in the first productions that were actually short films that were made as documentaries and that with time, began to enter the world of fiction. The first short films that were made depended on the length of the film roll, which at that time did not last more than 10 minutes. Sometime later, the editing technique arose, which consisted of joining different shots and through them it was possible to make longer films, with more complex structures, until the feature films were created.

However, in spite of these inventions, the short film did not disappear and on the contrary, it became a different cinematographic genre, full of its own language developed with a great expressive and dramatic force thanks to the ability to synthesize the stories. It is for this reason that today a short film can be a documentary or fiction, but always standing out for its short duration.

Types of short films

There are different types of short films and we can differentiate between short films for adults, for children, old, modern, animated, independent, university films, subtitles and mute films, to mention some general alternatives. Doing more in-depth studies on the subject, we find that there are more than these categories mentioned above. So there are the comic, dramatic short films, those that leave us with teachings, those that have managed to obtain awards in festivals, feminists, suspense and terror as well as religious ones, among other options.

Depending on their origin, we can find Latin American, European, Oriental, Bolivian, Uruguayan, Mexican, Spanish, German, French and Argentine short films, to name a few. It should also be noted that productions can be catalogued in three different ways depending on the function of the content, according to this, we then have short films of documentary or fiction. It may be that in these cases elements from other categories are combined.

How long does it last?

A short film is a production that has a maximum duration of 30 minutes and a minimum of 5 minutes. It is important to mention that once the 30 minutes have passed it will no longer be considered as such.

Featured short films

Some outstanding short films in the history of cinema are the following:

Written by Gabriela Briceño V.

How to cite this article?

Briceño V., Gabriela. (2019). Short film. Recovered on 23 February, 2024, de Euston96:

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