A still from director Patrick Jenkins' "Anna Walks In," a first-place winner in 2013
Films of no more than 30 minutes, in varying genres, will light up the screen at James River Shorts, a mini-festival that includes a juried contest for which film best embodies the essence of the James River Film Society — “the art of film and film as art.” Competition finalists will show their work to a special guest filmmaker and judge, Megan Holley, writer of Sunshine Cleaning, who will designate up to $2,000 in cash prizes. “We look for something a little edgy,” says Michael Jones, the film festival co-founder. “And you never know what you’re gonna get.” The screenings will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Nov. 7 at the VMFA’s Leslie Cheek Theater (admission is $8). jamesriverfilm.org.