13 March 2011

Suspended Animation

This is an incredibly and powerfully moving social documentary come drama. A young woman sits down and writes a desperate letter to a friend. What follows is a remarkable talking head style spoken essay on the nature and power of racism, both institutionalized by the media and channeled through the individual in its thrall.

Beautifully composed, produced, directed, and edited by Ada Elechi and shot by Megan Blackburn, this short film has the power to move simply by its grace, eloquence and understated production. There is no anger in this, or indeed judgment but it speaks volumes about the pressures under which minorities live. I was utterly taken aback by the power of this film and the beautiful way in which it was written and presented.

Alechi was born in Nigeria and lived there and in the Netherlands until she studied in the US, at Belmont University in Nashville where she graduated with a BA in Journalism. Since then she has worked for Guernica Magazine and as a publicist for the NY Writers Coalition. With a passion for documenting African stories and histories that would otherwise go unnoticed, Elechi is someone to watch out for if Suspended Animation is anything to go by.