Welcome to Iron Knob

By Dave Wade | Comedy
A young boy accidentally shoots a stranger and the town tries to cover it up.

Iron Knob is a sleepy little town in South Australia where nothing much happens. But then two boys playing outside one day accidentally shoot a stranger with one of their father's guns.

They enlist their older sister and an aunt to help clean up the mess and salvage the situation, but as they try to address the situation, the town reveals itself to be odder than thought. The father is still grieving his wife, who has passed away, and everyone else is too preoccupied with their own affairs and schemes to care much.

But thanks to the persistence of the sister, the town is shaken up, especially the grief-struck father, whose action finally jolts the funny little town forward to come together in an equally eccentric way.

Writer-director Dave Wade's dry, deadpan short comedy is a collective portrait of small-town life, where mores and manners don't change, no matter what happens.

Its sense of humor comes not from gags, quips or antics, but from a mastery of sustained tone and wry observation. When the boys shoot the stranger -- who ends up to be in a lot of trouble himself -- it shakes this little town up, rattling loose a long-dormant eccentricity.

The writing takes a keen pleasure in observing the ways this small community deals with the event, and much of the humor is found is how nonchalantly Iron Knob's denizens greet the small spark of accidental violence in the midst. Its rhythms and pacing are as ambling and measured as a lizard sitting in the sun, and even when someone is shot and their life threatened, nothing will budge the town citizens from their routine and small affairs.

The collective portrait of the town that emerges as more and more Iron Knob denizens find out about the shooting is one almost of atrophy, as if addled from too much time in the sun. As fitting to a town in the middle of nowhere, the film has sun-soaked cinematography and a beautiful sense of naturalism and uses these visual tools to create a strong sense of place that adds to the richness of the story.

"Welcome to Iron Knob" is much like the town that it evokes: distinctly Australian, offbeat, yet with its own peculiar charm. Viewers will enter a world that saunters along to its own internal rhythms, but it pays off in an ending that is satirically heartwarming and yet still strangely sweet. It's both a paean and a send-up to small towns, and how they can insulate its inhabitants from the rough currents of life -- for better or worse.

You Might Also Like:


By Oliver Goodrum | Drama
A man who bullied a disabled girl tries to escape his past. Then an angry mob finds him.


By Candice Carella | Drama
A single mother leaves her young daughter with a rock musician uncle.


By Richard Prendergast | Drama
A single mother takes her family on a road trip. But it's to an unwanted destination.

Second Best

By Alyssa McClelland | Comedy
Twin sisters turn into rivals when one's gymnastics career steals the spotlight.

No More Wings

By Abraham Adeyemi | Drama
2 friends meet at their favorite fried chicken shop. But their lives have diverged.


By Gokalp Gonen | Animation
A man is trapped on a spaceship after his robot overseer finds every planet uninhabitable.

Feeling Through (Oscars)

By Doug Roland | Drama
A homeless teen meets a deaf-blind man who changes his life forever...


By Hadley Hillel | Drama
A man's suicide attempt rips a hole in the ceiling. Then he befriends the boy upstairs.

Dig Your Own Grave

By Kirk Larsen | Comedy
A man is forced to dig his own grave in the desert. But the ground is hard.

Call Connect

By Josiah Allen and Indianna Bell | Drama
A young helpline operator takes her first call and gets more than she expected.

More Than God

By Kev Cahill | Comedy
A devoted husband suspects his wife is cheating on him. Then he hides under the bed.


By Erika Davis-Marsh | Romance
A young dancer falls for a deaf guy, then tries to find her place in the world.

Toni With an I

By Marco Alessi | Drama
An awkward girl doesn't fit in at school. Then the Internet comes to save her.

The Things You Think I'm Thinking

By Sherren Lee | Drama
A burn-survivor goes on his first date after his accident.

Into the Silent Sea

By Andrej Landin | Sci-Fi
A Soviet cosmonaut who is stranded in space discovers a voice in the distance.

Your favorite short films you haven't seen yet.

Inspiring and insightful. Entertaining and enlightening. That's what you can expect here: no fluff. Just a steady stream of the best films delivered to your inbox.