Apparently, when you become a senior citizen, you are afforded the same rights that you had when you were a child, which is hardly any. In Laura Checkoway’s documentary short, Edith + Eddie, she brings in her cameras to document the harsh realities and injustice of being a senior in America.
Edith Hill and Eddie Harrison met ten years ago playing the lottery. Today, at the age of 96 and 95, Edith and Eddie got married and become America’s oldest interracial couple. Edith and Eddie live in Edith’s home, which she had since her second marriage in 1960. But the story of Edith and Eddie centers on their right to live together as a married couple in the home of their choice.
“…centers on their right to live together as a married couple…”
The battle that our couple faces are between Edith and her daughter, Patricia. Patricia was dead set against the wedding of Edith to Eddie. After Edith’s power of attorney lapsed, which gave custodial rights to Edith’s other daughter Rebecca, Patricia swooped in to legally remove Edith from her longtime home and move her to a facility in Florida.
Edith is adamant about staying in her home with Eddie. The couple found staunch advocates for their relationship with Edith’s other daughter Rebecca, their church congregation, and director Checkoway and her film crew.
“…is there with her cameras to document the ultimate standoff…”
Edith + Eddie is a tragic love story. Checkoway is there with her cameras to document the ultimate standoff between Edith, Patricia and the court-appointed guardian, who Edith has never met, but legally able to make decisions for Edith, and is clearly set on removing Edith from her home.
Like a good documentary, Edith + Eddie spotlights the injustice seniors face when their rights and freedoms are taken away by family members waiting to gain from their death of their parents and the impersonal court system that claims to act in their best interest. Checkoway brings awareness to this problem but sadly can offer no solutions.
Edith + Eddie (2017). Directed by Laura Checkoway. Featuring Edith Hill and Eddie Harrison. Edith + Eddie is nominated for Best Documentary Short at the 2018 Academy Awards.
4 out of 5 stars