Sundance film shorts serve a variety plate

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Like Forrest Gump's proverbial box of chocolates, you never know what you're going to get with a short-film compilation, though with these seven works — selected from the 2011 Sundance Film Festival — the batting average is pretty high.

The content ranges from the white-on-white animation of the sci-fi themed "The Eagleman Stag" to the dark Russian submarine tale "Deeper Than Yesterday."

A couple of road dramas are intriguing: "The Strange Ones" (about a possible child abduction) and "We're Leaving" (about a Southern couple relocating their pet alligator).

Comedy is well represented by the single-shot Swedish comedy "Incident By a Bank" (about a botched robbery), and actor Lake Bell's directing effort, "Worst Enemy," about a woman (Michaela Watkins, formerly of "Saturday Night Live") who continually shoots down her best intentions.

But the most fascinating is Trevor Anderson's five-minute documentary "The High Level Bridge," a tribute to an icy bridge in Edmonton, Alberta, and the people who have committed suicide by jumping off of it. —


Sundance short films 2011

Opens Friday, Dec. 9, at the Tower Theatre; not rated, but probably PG-13 for violence, sexual content and language; some shorts are subtitled; 86 minutes.