By Admin | November 9, 2004

Annabelle (Wendy Mapes), one of the characters in “Fear of Falling” (Melissa M. Brown), reveals that people are universally afraid of falling. Annabelle admits to being afraid of something. If she’s afraid of falling, as the title indicates, what would she fall from, into, or through? The answer lies in the shape and boundaries of her mental strength.

The film portrays the way a person can be pulled to their limits and locked into a routine. Annabelle isn’t the sole care-taker of her epileptic, (possibly) mentally retarded brother Jamesy (Paul Schulz), but she seems to be the most affected by his condition. Whether or not he means it, he demands that she protect and constantly worry about his safety. Annabelle has to balance her personal life, which includes maintaining her relationship with Ray (Sidney Williams), with her duties to her brother.

The short film explores Annabelle’s attitude towards Jamesy, one that easily oscillates from positive to negative. You gather that sisterly love eventually triumphs over sibling bickering, but in “Fear of Falling,” endings aren’t so happy. The film suggests that Annabelle is running out of kindness but lacks the ability to turn her back on her brother. Director Melissa Brown creates a character that is stuck. She may not be bearing the burden of forever rolling a rock up a hill like Sisyphus, but Annabelle’s fear of living her life without Jamesy is equally unbearable.  

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