See "2009 Maryland Film Festival - Animated Shorts," Brett D. Rogers, May 7, 2009 for Rogers' picks. There's 3 films by Bill Plympton whom I always enjoy.
The official website is a bit confusing, but here's the relevant data and you can click through to buy tickets:
SHORTS: Animated Shorts
Running Time: 79 mins.
May 8, 11:30 AM Charles Theater 3
May 9, 10:00 PM Charles Theater 4
Animated American - James Baker, USA, 15 minutes
The future is about to collide with the past in this live-action/animation hybrid short. While shopping for a new mansion, Eric, a digital-loving studio executive, finds himself crossing swords with his realtor, Max, an out of work toon rabbit. Like it or not, Max will make Eric see things through the eyes of an “Animated American.”
The Cave: An adaptation of Plato's Allegory in Clay - Michael Ramsey, USA, 4 minutes
An excerpt from Plato's Republic, the 'Allegory of the Cave' is a classic commentary on the human condition – here adapted and brought to life using over 4,000 still photographs of John Grigsby's clay animation, lit by candlelight.
Dandelion Will Make You Wise - Jack Ofield, USA, 5 minutes
Life never truly ends, though only creatures and plants experience that unknowing wholeness of perpetual rebirth from season to season. To think holistically presumes the continuity of existence, presumes an appreciation of the 'la grace des grandes choses,' and presumes a child-like faith that the omega will presage a new alpha. This is the great mystery of the natural world. This is why the dandelion can make us wise.
Forestry – Woodpecker, Japan, 4 minutes
A tale of a man and woman who get in trouble with the mischief of smoke blown out of a tree’s hole in the woods.
Fruitless Efforts - Fruit of the Womb - Andrew Chesworth & Aaron Quist, USA, 5 minutes
Apple is trying to lead a normal life, but is being held back by his friends.
Horn Dog – Bill Plympton, USA, 6 minutes
This latest adventure of Plympton's plucky canine hero from Guard Dog, Guide Dog, and Hot Dog finds the beast putting the moves on an Afghan in the park.
I Am So Proud Of You – Don Hertzfeldt, USA, 22 minutes
Dark family secrets cast a shadow over Bill’s recovery in this, the second chapter to the prize-winning short Everything Will Be OK (MFF 2007).
Mexican Standoff – Bill Plympton, USA, 4 minutes
This music video for the Dutch band Parson Brown follows a three-sided love affair that goes absolutely wrong and the hearts that break along the way. Made using pencil on paper, scanned and digitally composited.
The Realm of Possibility - Gerald Guthrie, USA, 7 minutes
A digital animation based at the intersection of absurdity and logic. Deductive reasoning, as found in the syllogistic form (A is B, B is C, therefore A is C), becomes a vehicle to validate concepts that might not necessarily be true. The structure of the narrative is meant to parallel the premise of a syllogism. Many men use libraries; many libraries reference aviation; therefore, many men are pilots. In the end, navigation to another planet becomes a curious byproduct of flawed logic.
Santa: The Fascist Years – Bill Plympton, USA, 3.5 minutes
In this animated newsreel, we learn that jolly ol’ St. Nick has a dark, hidden past rooted in greed and politics. One of three new shorts from Academy Award© nominee Bill Plympton, this one featuring narration by Matthew Modine.
The View from Cleopatra's Knee - Jack Ofield, USA, 4 minutes
Across millennia, the genius of human creativity and freedom is chronically threatened by the ultimate solution to all problems: a standing army.