Garden of Ether

‘Garden Of Ether’ follows Sandra, a successful mystery novelist who struggles to juggle her career as well as motherhood. She takes a rare night off to spend time with her daughter Anna, an aspiring ballerina. As the night progresses, we witness that mother and daughter are being haunted by an Apparition - a figure from Sandra’s latest mystery novel ‘APPARITION’, where she has written obliquely about her own demons. Sandra fears for Anna’s life and does all that she can to save her daughter

  • Amanda Tan
  • Amanda Tan & Deepa Ayathorai
  • Boey Hui Ling
  • Amanda Tan
  • Jonathan Chow
    Assistant Director
  • Regine Yeow
  • Chia Choong Kai
    Audio Mixer
  • Elton Low Jun Wei
    Production Designer
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Drama, Horror
  • Runtime:
    20 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    May 1, 2020
  • Production Budget:
    3,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
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  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
Director - Amanda Tan
Director Statement

Losing a person you have loved wholeheartedly can be an excruciating and
traumatizing thing to experience. Sometimes it could be comforting
to consciously choose to live in a bubble that someone still exists because
it’s either too painful to let go, or because you feel it’s unfair for that person if you
did let go, or if you simply forget that the relationship existed and carried on
living without them. The core of ‘Garden of Ether’ lies in Sandra not
wanting to accept that Anna has passed, concocting visions that she still
exists, and reliving memories in her mind in order to deal with the loss of
her daughter.

There is an added layer of guilt and remorse that Sandra feels deeply,
fueled by the fact that she was always working and never spent enough time
with Anna when she was alive. ‘Garden of Ether’, being guised with
supernatural elements, also charts the impossibility of the juggling act
between motherhood and the traditional notion of success — the film being
a microcosm of being female. I want to emphasize the expectations of
being a woman/mother today — exaggeratedly displaying the lack of
choice between being a good mother and having a successful career
through its repercussions.

In an attempt to make use of the metaphorical aspects of narrative, I hope
to embody the manifestations of Sandra’s guilt and regret in an Apparition
she has created that comes alive to haunt her.

I hope to ultimately create a character an audience is able to empathize
with as a mother, regardless of Sandra’s shortcomings. As we witness
someone who she loves the most slipping away, the only thing she can do
about it is witness her disappearance as she fights to retain whatever receding
semblance of her daughter that is left in her mind.