Approaching the microphone in a small room, a young woman prepares to make the speech of her life.
Desperate to find her voice in the wake of an ended relationship, she resorts to sharing any piece of advice she can muster. Her reflection on their differences strikes up an imaginary conversation. That’s where Boris Seewald’s Afterword starts its uplifting grasp, right from the very beginning.
From the ashes of our love
I (Boris Seewald) set out with the hope of creating a short with more dialogue and story line compared to the films I had created directly prior to that. Together with a friend Phillip Moore, who has a way with words, we came up with a script which was ultimately quite drastically shortened due to various constraints. Initially inspired by the greek story of Penelope and Odysseus, we envisioned a shy girl who with a microphone would collect her philosophical and mundane thoughts throughout her day, as a way to find meaning and depth in her life as well as connecting to that person or imaginary audience.
It developed into a story of a girl searching for sense in her life, with a need to be heard and understood as she recovers herself from a recent breakup.
The film plays out as a sort of monologue which becomes a conversation between her and her ex. His voice is played through audio recording devices as if branded in her memory. The microphone represents her need to find her voice and be heard and her audience materialises as imaginary followers who are supporting her in her quest.
At times her thoughts are mundane and random as she searches to find depth and meaning in her confusion, and in other moments she finds articulation and resolve. While writing the script we had already Marama Corlett in mind, thankfully she found the time and she embodied that character and vision beautifully. The film was substantially funded by the German Federal Film Board Grant which was received through the success of Momentum (also featured on FilmShortage).
Motivation runs incredibly high in the film, something driven by the dedicated work of the entire production. From the formidably specific and detailed script, to the choreography and the absolutely awe-aspiring performance by Marama Corlett. It took fabulous directing and editing to give it its poetic beat, and a parsing soundtrack to glue it all together.
Production of the film was challenging and we overcame certain obstacles. Firstly finding the outdoors location, then the logistical challenge of getting to it since it was 1-2 hours outside the city of Berlin. We were on a very tight schedule which was plagued by bad weather and we even lost time due to a minor (thankfully) car accident.
The postage stamps on the background wall in the opening scene were real and took a team of 5 people (including myself and the cinematographer) 2 full days to complete.
The film was shot on the canon C300 MK II, mostly on a Gimbal, sometimes on a tripod and a dolly (in the studio). The drone was a DJI Phantom 3. Post-production was a close collaboration between image and sound. Ralf Hildenbeutel composed and recorded the soundtrack which had to be adjusted several times to perfect the symbiosis between the music and the video editing. (Note: The original soundtrack will be released on the 7th of December 2018 on all music streaming and download platforms). For the male voice-over (by Patrick Hanna from my previous short film „Momentum“) we recorded his voice and then re-recorded it through different audio devices (tape, old amps etc) to get that specific sound.