10 Best Short Films on Netflix to Watch Under 40 Minutes

Netflix has acquired some of the finest short films ever made, from the selection of the Sundance Film Festival to Academy Award Winners. A short film usually has a running time of forty minutes or less and is most often based on a social issue. However, there are a huge number of short films on Netflix that will leave your mind boggled just within twenty minutes. 

We have compiled a list of short films on Netflix for a quick and quality which will serve the need of entertainment and at the same time leave you in awe due to their powerful stories. 

1. The Present

The Present is a Palestinian short film directed by Farah Nabulsi. It tells a mundane story about a father and his daughter going out to shop and buy a present for his wife. 

The family lives in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. This 24-minute short film tells us how hard it for the people residing there to do even a simple thing as going shopping. Their lives are as rocky as the roads on which they have to walk and as barren as the land on which they live. It is one of the most heart-touching short films on Netflix.

You can watch The Present on Netflix.

2. What Did Jack Do?

An American short film, What Did Jack Do? is a black and white film directed by David Lynch. It is an eccentric film in which a detective, played by Lynch himself, interrogates a monkey named Jack who is a suspect in a murder. In this 17-minute long tale, Jack talks about his life and performs a little song. The conversation between Jack and the detective is in typical film-noir style with clichés after clichés. 

You can watch What Did Jack Do? on Netflix.

Also Read: 5 Best Tom Hanks Movies That Will Steal Your Heart | 5 Best Underrated Bollywood Movies that will Blow Your Mind!

3.  If Anything Happens I Love You

Netflix released a beautiful short film about the social issue which all of us are aware of: mass shooting. 

If Anything Happens I Love You is a perfect elegy for the parents who have gone through the excruciating loss of their child to such a shooting in a school. Twelve minutes long, If Anything Happens I Love You is an animated film directed and written by Michael Govier and Will McCormack. This one, too, is one of the most heart-touching short films on Netflix.

You can watch this short film on Netflix.

4.  Canvas

A 9-minute long film, Canvas is an animated short film on Netflix directed by Frank Abney III. It is about a grandfather who is grieving after his wife passes away. He was once a painter who put down his brush as he mourned his love while he struggled to reclaim his passion for putting colours on a canvas. 

This tear-jerker is one of the sweetest short films on Netflix and is a perfect watch for a quick feel-good story. 

You can watch Canvas on Netflix.

5. Sitara

Child marriage is something extremely common even today. It is a social evil that many children, especially girls, have to face. Sitara is one of the most beautiful short films on Netflix which depicts the life of a young girl with big dreams who falls under the weight of cultural barriers and is wedded off to a man who looks twice or even thrice her age. 

In just 15 minutes it captures the injustice faced by millions of young girls. It is directed by Sharmeen Obaid-Chinoy, a Pakistani filmmaker. 

You can watch Sitara on Netflix.

Also Read: Netflix’s Kitty Love: An Homage to Cats Review: Cute, Cuddly and Lots of Mischiefs! | Carnaval Review: Hot and Heartbroken Influencer on an Exotic Trip

6. Baxu and the Giant

Baxu and the Giant is a short film on Netflix about rhino poaching which leads to social change in a village in Namibia. The film is 28 minutes long and shows the change through the eyes of a young girl. 

Baxu lives a culturally deep and poor life in the village but she is happy with all that she has. But when the opportunity of poaching rhinos arises, her brother reaches for it to earn money for his family. It depends on the young girl to save her village and the rhinos from the greedy men. Baxu and the Giant is directed by Florian Schott.

You can watch Baxu and the Giants on Netflix.

7. Zion

Zion is a documentary based on a boy named Zion Clark who was born without legs. It shows the struggles he faced while growing up in one foster home to another then finally being adopted by a woman when he was sixteen years old.

This short film shows how Zion worked hard relentlessly to become a wrestler which also grows his self-confidence. It is 11 minutes long and is a perfect watch for a pop documentary. Zion is directed by Floyd Russ and is one of the most inspiring short films on Netflix.

You can watch Zion on Netflix.

8. Two Distant Strangers

An American short film on Netflix, Two Distant Strangers portrays racism and police brutality, two social evils that are common and go hand-in-hand in the country. It has a fictional plot but is based on reality. Two Distant Strangers has a Groundhog-Day-like drama revolved around a Black urban hipster named Carter James. 

James faces police brutality over and over again and makes us think about the prejudices that we carry within ourselves. The short film is directed by Travon Free and directed by Free and Martin Desmond Roe and is 32 minutes long.

You can watch Two Distant Strangers on Netflix.

9. Period. End of a Sentence

The Oscar-winning short film is a documentary, directed by Rayka Zehtabchi, that is inspired by the life of Arunachalam Muruganantham, a man who has played a pivotal role in the revolution of menstrual hygiene in India. 

Period. End of a Sentence is based in the village Hapur in Northern India. In this village as well as the whole country, women have to face the stigma surrounding menstruation.

The film shows how the women in Hapur had no access to menstrual hygiene products which caused a lot of young girls to drop out of school. But due to the collective effort, things change when the manufacturing of sanitary pads begins and the social stigma starts to end. 

You can watch Period. End of a Sentence on Netflix.

10. The Trader

A short documentary film, The Trader provides a glimpse into the lives of travelling trader who sells second-hand clothes and other household items in rural Georgia.

The Trader takes us into a poverty-stricken world where trading happens between potatoes and the rest of the things which is a currency in that area. The short film is directed by Tamta Gabrichidze and is 23 minutes long.

You can watch The Trader on Netflix.

There is many more great short films on Netflix which you can watch that will make you feel different things. Tell us your favourite one in the comments!

Also Read: Netflix’s Nail Bomber: Manhunt Review: The Gruesome 1999 London Bombings | Dancing Queens Review: A Delightful and Lighthearted Story

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