"Beauty is ever to the lonely mind a shadow fleeting; she is never plain. She is a visitor who leaves behind the gift of grief, the souvenir of pain."~ Christopher Morley
This was a collaboration by my production company, Unemployed Hercules and Moyo Oyelola's Melements productions. This was our first project together.
There are many meanings flowing throughout this film, and possibly more than we, the creators, are aware of. Perhaps we will later update this description to give a more detailed explanation of the film's message. But for now, it is sufficient to say that the film explores the emotions of helpless desire, those desires that seem so impossible yet so tempting that we create and play out our own reality of obtaining them to fill in the invariable reality of their unattainable nature. This is kind of what shadows seem to be: a play on what we see, something that is not real but is given a form of identity by what is real. Which, I find, to be the mystery and intrigue behind the imagery of shadows; they are something of a middle ground between the true and the almost-true.
The man has indeed imagined the lady out of his own desire to have something like her, and because he knows this is a specious arrangement he has made with his own reality out of desperation, he is grieved with the terms of the negotiation. The lady comes and goes as she pleases, coldly maintains her emotional remove, and leisurely sashays through his helpless desires. The only person that regards her (sees her) is the watching man, whom the man never acknowledges while she is around (perhaps on purpose). The watching man and the lady maintain a bitter relationship, as the watching man, who represents the man's conscience, finds the lady and the whole arrangement by the man as shameful. But in the end, when the charade is over (for the time being), the man must return to his reality and face his conscience in the end.
This film was based on my short story, "No Trace, No Sound, No Woman". The story, and the eventual short film was inspired by Louis Armstrong's rendition of "St. James Infirmary Blues". The mood and theme of the film is largely based on the story told by Pops. The quote by Christopher Morley, at the end, we felt, was a poetic way to summarize the story. We chose a film noir motif, because the play of shadows and light were great idioms for the story.