Naomi Hausman

Naomi Hausman
"Language of Flowers"
Short film 

My short film Language of Flowers processes grief, isolation, and accepting death in a way that mirrors, but is markedly different from, our current experience. This 10-minute film portrays a young girl who, after a natural apocalypse, believes in her grief that pages of an old flower guide hold the route back to finding her family. Filmed entirely outdoors with one cast member (and one cow!), this is a process film that communicates numbness, pain, and acceptance through variations on one girl’s guided yet aimless wandering. Nothing is stated outright: long shots, abrupt transitions between scenes, and a minimal soundscape convey changing time and emotions.

My past short films are concerned with the same themes that brought me to this film. My black-and-white 16mm horror film Pursuit focuses on a patient waking up in a strange underground building, alone and isolated except for strange sounds behind locked doors. Jubilation Radio sets the stage on an island city, trapped inland as climate change has so exacerbated the seas to make travel impossible. My “Untitled Mars murder mystery” screenplay raises its stakes as, with every death, someone loses a family member.

In an abundance of media documenting life in quarantine, Language of Flowers explores the same harrowing realities we now live with in a visually and emotively unique way. My film breaks out of the mold of quarantine films: it frames the bleak new normal of death, loneliness, and no access to external support from the perspective of a precocious teen. She frames her new life in nature as an adventure with a hopeful conclusion—but when she truly faces her reality, when she can no longer delude herself, she must find the will to carry on.

Film still

Film still

Film still #3

Film still #4

Film still #5

Film still #6

Film still #7

Film still #8


VADA Senior Exhibition 2021