I chose to analyze the short film Eden, in which two boys, one older and one younger, are walking through a caged enclosure, over an abandoned highway. The only things we hear are the wind and a pipe the young one is dragging along the caged enclosure. They look out to the empty road, and the little boy asks what happened to the cars. The older one answers ominously “They’re all gone, things were a lot different before.” The young boy coughs. The older boy says “but you’re different from everyone we’re gonna find you a doctor” he says in a reassuring tone of voice. One can safely assume from the characters’ interaction with one another that they care for each other in the way two brothers would. They continue to walk through the caged tunnel and there is a low angle close up of the older boy’s face- we are looking up at him, and up to him just as the younger brother character does. This establishes the older brother’s role as the protagonist.
Cut to a medium shot of a very dry and dead looking field. They walk through the field, a map in hand. There is no music in this film, only the sounds of the wind in the abandoned setting, the boys’ dialogue and the young one’s coughing. After wandering through the field for a bit they stop and the older boy kneels down and tells the younger one to wait there while he runs over the hill to the hospital where he’ll find a doctor to help. As he runs to get help while the little one sits down, coughing away. There is a low angle shot of the older boy climbing over the hill and standing at the top of the hill and dropping the map. There is a grim feeling. He is looking toward the completely abandoned and empty hospital. The POV shots allow us to see what he sees, and feel what he feels. He looks around and sees nothing. No one. Not a soul. There is an eerie feeling of isolation and hopelessness. Cut to an over the shoulder shot of the hopelessly empty hospital. Close up of his face, the look conveys a feeling of helplessness. He slowly walks back into the field toward his little brother.
Cut to the older boy walking back to the field towards the little boy, with a grim look on his face. He reaches out for the young boys hand and tells him to come play. The young boy stops in his tracks and asks “what about the doctor?” When the older boy tells him not to worry about it with a more chipper tone of voice, young Max pulls his hand away from his brother, stops in his tracks and says, “I’m going to die” in a tone which can not be distinguished as a question of shock or statement of disbelief. Before turning around the older boy, with a heartbroken look on his face, takes a deep breath as if he is about to explain something and turns to the young one with a cracking voice “Max…” only to see that the young one has vanished into the thin dusty air of the dried, dead field. He calls and screams out “Max? Max! Max?!” and the audience can clearly see and hear how panicked he is. Extreme long shot of him running into the field screaming out for his little brother. We hear only the wind.
I think that these shots were cut in the right places, seamlessly. I found it to make sense. From the first scene, it was clear that the characters were on a journey of some sort, and that one was powerful and the other was weak. The editing allowed the audience to get a sense of the setting, and I think the lack of a musical soundtrack added to that. The ambient noise was just right for the tone of the piece. The relationship between the different images is clearly linked by the desolate settings. The land in the piece is dying, just as the young boy is.