Cold City (United States, 12 min )
Directed by: Kelechi Jude
Cold City is a story focusing on Benjamin, a West African immigrant doing his best to make ends meet. Working in the back of a Chinese restaurant, Benjamin puts up with arrogant customers and a boss, Mr. Chen, always on his back. When Benjamin's wages are lowered and he puts up a fight, Mr. Chen fires him on the spot.Back home, Benjamin picks up Titi, his six-year-old daughter, from a neighbor and heads back to his apartment singing her that same lullaby his own parents sang him. What he finds is a horrifying sight: the Immigration Police are banging on his door. Benjamin flees the scene before they see him. But now Benjamin has a tired and hungry six-year-old he has to feed. Over the course of the next few hours, Benjamin and Titi make their way across the city looking for somewhere to eat.They come across a fair, a few closed places and finally end up back at the very restaurant he was fired from earlier in the day.Benjamin has barely enough money in his pocket to pay for a meal, so he sneaks around back to the garbage to steal some leftovers. Caught red-handed by his former boss, Benjamin is humiliated in front of his daughter. Nothing, though, will stop him from trying to feed his daughter, something Mr. Chen (an immigrant himself) relates to. The owner of the place has prepared a little something for Titi, and he offers Benjamin his job back.In the car, Benjamin, exhausted, drifts to sleep... this time Titi hums him the lullaby as her father finally gets some shut-eye.