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Open to ages 12-18, Luminescence has traditionally been an international teen film festival highlighting local teens in Palo Alto, but for the 2nd year in a row, we will be opening up the local submissions and turning our festival into a celebration of teen filmmakers around the greater San Francisco Bay Area!

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2024 Luminescence Nominees


Julia Hayden Fung (16), Los Altos High School

Santa Clara County

A film that shows the experience of lost relationships through the eyes of a young girl. "Stranger" is a story of love, loss, and the regret through passing of time.


When The House Burns

Catherine Wan (17), California Crosspoint High School

Alameda County

Two lovers struggling to find common ground as they revert to cycles of addiction - they must learn to love each other again.


Two Girls One Stolen Gun

Allison Crick (17), Branham High School

Santa Clara County

This is a chase sequence, where a cowgirl is trying to catch another cowgirl who stole her gun. 



Lukas Leu (16), Santa Clara High School

Santa Clara County

A girl named Andrea finds a mysterious watch that turns anything into LEGO, with just a touch.



Kylee O’Brien (17), Saratoga High School

Santa Clara County

Film follows a scientist who is part of the Manhattan Project as he aids in the creation of the atomic bomb used on Japan for the end of WWII, it depicts the emotional struggles the scientist goes through as he creates a bomb without realizing how many people will be killed from it.



Paavo Lahdesmaki (18), Los Altos High School

Santa Clara County

A man is haunted in his own home, and he must go face to face with himself. 


Half Return

Matilde Smith (17), Ruth Asawa School of the Arts

San Francisco County

Estranged sisters find connection through confrontations by memories of childhood.



Sophia Pestoni (17), Woodside High School

San Mateo County

A informative coming of age film that drives into the positives and negatives that come and go with every age, emphasizing living in the present and all the wonderful things that come with it. 


Voice of Water

Noah Molina (18), University of California, Berkeley

Alameda County

A concept short film about Leka, a mute island girl who after watching news of the devastating Maui fires instigating tragedy within her home, receives a mental visit from the four central Hawaiian Gods who help change her perspective of life.


Ramp Up

Pablo Schettino Gonzalez (18), Gunn High School

Santa Clara County

A comedic narrative short of a kid’s idea of becoming a BMX biker and overcoming childhood trauma.


My Father’s Daughter

Maya-Rose Grandy (17), Silicon Valley Career Technical Education

Santa Clara County

In light of an absence from her 18th birthday, Adrienne reflects on her relationship with her vacant father.


Movin’ Out

Jonny Baker (18), Piedmont Hills High School

Santa Clara County

A timeless story told from the sound and music of Billy Joel through the lens of Jonny Baker. Movin' Out is a coming-of-age story, where a young man has to leave home and figure out his own life.


Portrait of My Oakland

Kayen Manovil (17), Berkeley High School

Alameda County

A depiction of Oakland in its many beauties and flaws through the eyes of the director.



Eloise Dumas (17), Palo Alto High School

Santa Clara County

Two teens discuss next steps in their relationship.



Sophia Warder (17), Silicon Valley Career Technical Education

Santa Clara County

A woman goes grocery shopping, where she finds a poster saying a killer is on the loose. A mysterious man lingers around her, and she cautiously leaves the store. The man follows her, and a chase between them ensues. In this case, things aren't always what they seem.

A Mexican in Japan

Jose Soreque (16), Silicon Valley Career Technical Education

Santa Clara County

A parody and homage to Cantinflas and Charlie Chaplin where Juan needs to fight for his life after accidentally getting a sensei mad. 


Fear La Chancia

Angie Wells (16), Silicon Valley Career Technical Education

Santa Clara County

Chase Sequence Project- A kid breaks the window of their house by accident and is chased around town by their Mama to be disciplined.

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