It is unlikely that you can see a short animated film unless it comes with a mainstream movie, as Parly Cloudy comes with Up from Pixar, or you can go to one of the animation festivals around the world, as Annecy, Art Futura or Siggraph.
I can understand that the thinking heads of the big production companies are reluctant to let some movie distribute freely in the web, as they have their mass distribution media to get to the people, and that produces large revenues. But for short films or independent art that don’t have well formed distribution channels, and they are amazing pieces of work, I can’t understand why the work is somewhat hidden from the consumer under a simple and unsatisfactory trailer. If this small pieces of work were more publicly and freely broadcast, the author would gain more fame and recognition.
I say this because three of the best animated films that I have had the opportunity to see at SIGGRAPH these days are not available on the web (or I got tired of searching). If someone finds them, even if they are edonkey or emule links, or bittorrent files, please let me know. I will now put the trailers in here.
The Spine by Chris Landreth
The acclaimed director of Ryan (2004) and Bingo (1998) presents a devastating psychological story about couples with dependency problems. As he did with Ryan, the psychology and the state of mind of the character is metaphorically extrapolated to the body shapes. Here you can see the making of:Alma by Rodrigo Blaas
In the tradition of the series The Twilight Zone or the spanish Historias para no dormir, by Narciso Ibáñez Serrador, this story about a girl fascinated by a doll that copies her features and clothes, is at the same time fascinating and terrifying. Here is just 22 seconds of it:
French Roast by Frabrice O. Joubert
A beggar comes into a café where a wealthy old man refuses to give him a single coin. Soon the man will realize that he left the purse at home and he has no way of paying his coffe. It is exhilaratin but also makes you think about the social classes in this world. Here is the trailer.