2022 Arizona Underground Film Festival Award Winners

2022 was quite a year for the Arizona Underground Film Festival, with tons of great films screened. See you next year!

Best Narrative Feature

Wild Bones

2022 / 86 min / UK / Mystery, Drama

Directed by Jack James
Cast: Roxy Bulger, Mary Roubos, Liz Farhadi

Fay reconnects with her sister, Alice, as she misremembers the cause of her Father’s disappearance and allows it to consume her.

Fay lives a life that is blurred and frayed at the edges; memories are catching up with her as past cruelties, and tragedies collide into sharp focus through a myriad of visions and half-remembered history.

Fay’s sister, Alice, reaches out and reveals that they have been left a house by their missing Father, now presumed dead. To retrieve her Father’s house, Fay has to meet with Candace, Alice’s biological Mother and the woman Fay holds responsible for her past trauma.

The two sisters attempt to rebuild their relationship, while trying to convince one another of the truth about their family and their history.

Best Horror Feature

Night Caller

2021/ 84 min / USA / Horror

Directed by Chad Ferrin
Cast: Steve Railsback, Susan Priver, Kelli Maroney, Bai Ling

A telephone psychic is pulled into a complex web of mystery when she receives a call from a serial killer.

Best Documentary Feature

Circus of the Scars

2022/ 95 min / USA / Documentary

Directed by Chicory Wees

A scrappy sensational sideshow revival act playing Seattle dive bars suddenly launches into the big time, riding the same wave that brought grunge rock crashing into mainstream culture. Circus of the Scars is a 95-minute micro-budget documentary that follows the infamous Jim Rose Circus Sideshow on a relentless and controversial world tour. Sold out audiences gape in horror and howl with laughter, but behind-the-scenes, inner struggles and battles with their maniacal hype master push the troupe ever closer to an early implosion.

Best Narrative Short

The Saverini Widow

2020 / 19 min / France / Drama, Revenge

Directed by Loïc Gailllard
Cast: Christiane Conil, Toussaint Martinetti

Bonifacio 1883, extreme south of Corsica. The widow of the late Saverini lives in an isolated house near the cliffs, with her only son Antoine, and her dog. During the day, she assists women giving birth in town. One night her son is killed in a clash. The murderer flees to Sardinia. Her world falls to pieces…

Best Horror Short


2022 / 12 min / USA / Horror

Directed by Joe Lueben
Cast: Gates McFadden

A mysterious woman appears at a young father’s home seeking recompense for a long-buried transgression. But she doesn’t want money—she wants one of his fingers..

Best Documentary Short

Safe Passage (for Shelia)

2021 / 3 min / USA / Documentary

Directed by Erin Fussel

On the surface, Safe Passage (for Sheila) is a look at living alone during the pandemic in a 2 1/2 minute story about a spider. In a deeper sense, it challenges the femme fatale stereotype. Based on a true story.

Best Experimental Short

It’s Coming, It’s Real

2022 / 8 min / USA / Experimental

Directed by Alexia Oldini & Steven Gray

A politically charged fever dream montage for “It’s Coming It’s Real” by Swans.

Best Animation

The Sprayer

2022 / 9 min / Iran / Animation

Directed by Farnoosh Abeo


he land occupied with the sprayers army, no one has the right to grow any kind of plants either in public or private.

So many of the people and soldiers do not even know how does a plant grow or look like, until one day one of the soldiers finds a seed buried deep down in the dust and his curiosity is just the beginning of something extraordinary, something big, something revolutionary.