Left Unsaid: The Tyranny of Eternal Silence

Left Unsaid: The Tyranny of Eternal Silence

The Twenty 120 Project: Left Unsaid

Left Unsaid is an experimental film that was created by Rob Chiu, who is an acclaimed English graphic arts designer and a producer of conceptual short-films. He created this particular live action film as one of twenty film directors invited to create short films of 120 seconds duration for The Twenty 120 Project. Left Unsaid addresses the general concept of “Change” and the particular theme of “Truth and Deception.”

Left Unsaid: A Tragic View of Childhood Loss

Left Unsaid centers upon the issue of loss, in particular Chiu’s personal interpretation of the feelings of loss experienced by the child upon his/her first major encounter with the self-limitations of the external world. At that point, the past quickly shades into memories of the past, which soon take on an unreal, dreamlike quality. Thus torn away from the past, the child loses connections with feelings for both home and loved ones. Looking toward the future offers no solace. The truth of the future, of a tomorrow, is a hollow and empty one, promising only existential doubt and loneliness. Ultimately, Chiu’s interpretation of the child’s conscious entry into external reality is a fatalistic and tragic one.

Living in the Present: Embracing Ambiguity and Uncertainty

The beauty of Chiu’s film calls out like the mythological Sirens of the sea, seducing the viewer into the tragic world of isolation and enternal silence. But it need not be. For example, if we look to the past for meaning, can we really gain such an understanding by tracing the little, seemingly trivial things in the particular chain of events in our lives back to our earliest years? Or, on the other hand, is existence and the course of our lives simply a matter of coincidence.

There is, of course, an alternative perspective about attempting to achieve some understanding about the meaning and course of our lives. If we focus on the present, rather than upon the past, we are faced with having to acknowledge that human choice always involves choosing one particular course of action while abandoning others, some of which may have turned out to be in some respects equally, or even more preferable. Furthermore, our choice of a particular course of action is always complicated by the unknowingness or ultimate uncertainty about where the path or paths not taken actually might have led.

While life’s ambiguity ultimately is irreducible, learning to embrace the ambiguous and uncertain nature of our lives can vitalize and enrich our experiences of surprise. In other words, focusing upon the present can expand our capacities to become engaged in depth with the ongoing, day-to-day events in our lives. This in turn calls for us learn how to become prepared to be unprepared for new experiences.

Left Unsaid: The Tyranny of Eternal Silence

A short-film by Rob Chiu

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