Filmmaker: Liminal Films
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GARDENING AT NIGHT

January 1, 2016

TRT 12:21

Exhibition: DCP, .mov, .mp4, BluRay

Select laurels below. A full list of festival screenings available on request. 

Gardening At Night Trailer

SYNOPSIS: The period between knowing death is near and death’s arrival forms an unbearable state of regret, sadness and anticipation for Samantha. She is powerless to help Anne, who on the eve of her death, has not come to terms with her fate and remains angry and afraid. Samantha recreates conversations between Elyse and Anne from the hospital in order to comprehend what Anne is facing and the enormity of her own impending loss. Waiting expands time to the point that it loses meaning. The world shrinks to encompass only her and her phone, which will ring soon with the news. That night she can no longer bear the stillness and despite the darkness, Samantha tries to put neglected garden in order. Caring for living things gives her a temporary sense of control. Afterwards she realizes how she can help Anne let go of her fear, which also gives her the chance to say a personal good-bye to her friend. 

DIRECTOR'S STATEMENT: In 2012 my lifelong friend Anne died of leukemia. The night she passed away I went out to garden after I could no longer sit still waiting for the phone to ring with the news. The only light I had was from the motion detector lights, which kept switching off. I wrote the script several months later and got in touch with the band REM to see if I could get the rights to their song 'Gardening At Night' for the film. Through a friend I was able to get the script to the band and they agreed to allow me to use the song. When I went to make the deal with their the record company, I was told the title of my film could not be the title of their song. I protested, saying that the only action in the film was gardening at night and this was based on autobiography, not the song. They conceded and allowed me to use it. During editing it was clear that the song's pace was too fast and the effect was too jarring in the end credits. Instead I chose a recording of the real Anne telling what she was grateful for during her hospital stay. The original sound recording was too compressed to use, so I transcribed it and had the actress playing Anne in the film recite it. She embodies Anne and gives a haunting performance throughout. 

For more information from cinematographer Jonah Rubash on the visual design for Gardening at Night visit his website here.

     

 

 

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