Browse films

Unicorn Boy

Matt Kiel
United States, 2023, 90 min.

In English.
This film is family friendly.

AIFF Award Winner:
Festival Grand Prize

Unicorn Boy is a young adult, coming-of-age animated feature which explores the complexity of first heartbreak and gender identity, created and animated entirely by the imaginative Matt Kiel. The story follows Matty, a down-on-their-luck artist, distraught by a recent breakup, who is magically sucked into a unicorn-run alternate dimension. Now, Matty must work with their new unicorn friends to conquer a dark force, bringing peace to their kingdom and emotional stability to their bleak Silver Lake life. This auteur-driven portrait of one’s former self is a beautiful reflection of the challenges that come along with growth and self-discovery.

Director's Statement

Unicorn Boy is a passion project 10 years in the making. A decade ago I moved to Los Angeles, alone, confused, and seriously suffering from OCD & depression. I knew I wanted this life, but I also knew the traditional paths weren’t for me. I have never fit neatly into a box. So, I began my journey, without a roadmap, grounding or destination. This film was a battle of will. I gave it every ounce of my energy and faith. It is at the same time where I’ve been, where I am and where I’m going. Even in writing this, I find new revelations about my journey. Looking back, I have so much more insight into what I was truly creating and experiencing, when at the time I simply knew it was what I had to do to survive.

Category: Animation, Award Winner.
Themes: Identity, Friendship.

More in Animation

  • Buon Ferragosto

    Buon Ferragosto

    Claudia Miatello
    Canada, 2022, 7 min.

    When his father has to work on Ferragosto (Italy's national holiday) instead of going to the sea, a boy has the adventure of his lifetime in the city of... more ›

  • Pour Generation

    Pour Generation

    Patrick Smith
    United States, 2022, 4 min.

    A winsome mutation is shunned by a homogenous tribe of siblings... more ›

  • The Rat

    The Rat

    Yuanqing Cai
    China, 2022, 13 min.

    On a stormy night, a drunk man stumbles back home. Vomiting accompanied by vertigo in which he sees two huge rats in his house. Disgusted and cranky he... more ›