Three 10-year-old children, wearing animal costumes, walk in a field. Lit in azure, Shirley stands on the crumbling floor of a warehouse. In lime green, Duke pushes a pole, Butch drinks from a small plastic cup and Steve smirks. A light fixture swings as Shirley puts her hands behind her back.
Steve plays the guitar and whispers in Shirley’s ear. Butch stands next to her and walks away. Steve slices through the guitar as Butch holds it. Duke smashes the guitar. One of the children raises their arms in the air and foot in the field. Steve, Duke and Butch unravel reels of film and toss them.
Lit in canary yellow, Shirley leans against a stall in a bathroom. She dances by the sink. Back at the warehouse, she stands in the unraveled film. Butch throws a record. She walks around Butch in the bathroom. Small shreds of paper fall on Shirley as she dances. She sits on the ground as the 10-year-old children watch in the field. Head in her hands, she runs her hand through her hair. Back at the warehouse, she takes some debris off Butch’s face. While sitting on the ground, she rocks herself.
The 10-year-old girl sneaks up to her friend and asks her a question. Her friend gasps and tells her, “you scared me.” The 10-year-old girl says she didn’t mean it. However. as she walks back to her desk, she smiles. It made her feel a little better. Not much did, though. But she wasn’t sure what was wrong, though. However, it worked for her. Her parents just thought she was upset about school.
Shirley looks up at the grey sky. It may rain. She had been looking forward to it. However, it been several days already. But she had refused to give up on it. It was hope, however she received it. She walks into her apartment and stares out the window as it drizzles. Thunder rattles in the distance and she grins. For the first time in months, she wanted to dance and sing and enjoy her life.
Her mom tells her she’s so pessimistic. She should change her attitude. Shirley eats some ice cream and says it’s who she is. Her mom says she just needs to believe. Shirley shrugs and says, “believe in what?” Her mom handwaves her response and says, “that’s the problem.” Shirley sighs and brings her bowl to the sink.
Director: Samuel Bayer Year: 1995