At every age, we react to death differently; A four-year-old girl dies in an accident. Now, the teenager, a witness and unwitting accomplice of the tragedy, and the mother of the child will have to go through a difficult path of acceptance.
Act 1: begins with a quote of a four-year-old girl`s description of death and a voice-over of her thoughts about this topic. On an ordinary Sunday morning, Сhild, taking her favorite plush rabbit toy, comes to the playground with her mother. At some point, Adult has to leave the playground for a while and the child is left alone.
Act 2: begins with a quote of a fifteen-year-old girl`s description of death. Observing the memories of Teenager, the secret that she hides is revealed. On the day when Child was left alone on the playground, Teenager meets Child and gives her a candy. Leaving the playground, Teenager realizes that the girl has choked. Teenager could not save Child and subtended in a state of shock leaves the girl alone, not confessing her involvement in the accident.
Act 3: begins with a quote of a thirty-six-year-old woman who lost her child. After the death of Child, Adult is left alone with her grief, reminiscing her dead daughter, and immersing in depression. At some point, a woman has a dream in which her memories of a lost child resurface. After waking up, she decides to leave the apartment for the first time since the accident. On the pavement, she finds a note with the inscription “ATROPOS”.
Act 4: takes us back to fragments of Teenager’s memories of the day of the incident, revealing Teenager’s feelings of guilt and despair. Teenager lives every day in fear of being exposed for being involved in the death of Child. The toy, which Teenager took with her when she left the playground, serves as a reminder of what happened that day. The note “ATROPOS” found by Adult was written by Teenager a day after the incident. After returning home, Teenager has a dream about the incident, which plunges her even deeper into feelings of guilt, fear and involvement in the death of Child.
Act 5: begins with a quote of an eighty-nine-year-old man about his wish before the death. Many years later, the girl who was Teenager, involved in the accident, appears already in older age. Fragments of her life reveal that she has not yet forgotten about that incident and only feels more guilty for the death of Child. However, now, she is also nearing the end of her life. After she had a dream about a dead girl, she decides to return the toy to where Child had left it. After leaving the toy and the narcissus flower on the swing, while leaving the playground, Elder turns around and sees the dead girl, who is happy to get her favorite toy back. Elder gets rid of guilt and accepts what has happened.
Acceptance: Elder, Adult and Child meet in a shared dream, where each of them can say and do everything they could not do in the past. The mother can finally hug her daughter again; Elder can redeem herself; Child can give her mother a flower of rebirth.
More details: As a director and screenwriter of the film, I gathered information on peoples` feelings and views towards death through interviewing people from different age groups. My findings informed the four characters’ personalities as well as my choices regarding music. The tittle given for each chapter is inspired by the quotes taken from the interviews. The drawings on the glass depicting death appearing in the film were drawn by children of various ages during interviews with them. I appear in the film myself as the person who removes the note “ATROPOS” from the window of the bus and throws it on the pavement. I play the organ Bach`s Suite d`orchestre No.3 BWV1068: II. Aria during an older woman`s church visit.
Directed by Ekaterina Olegovna Stepanova (Cyprus)