By Casey Robles

First and foremost, I want to say that Black Molasses is shot beautifully. I loved every second of this film and felt as if I was getting drawn in deeper and deeper as it went on. The film showcases a young woman named Gaia. a term that is commonly used as an affectionate name for Mother Earth. Black Molasses shows how the universe is experiencing itself through friendships, alcohol, sex, and remaining grounded. It begins with a scene of Gaia with her head out the window, blissfully enjoying the wind blowing through her hair. We then move on to a scene of her and a white male who makes comments on “fucking a mixed girl” and then cut. This ordeal shows how men can use women and dispose of them easily once they’re done bedding them, similar to how humankind does over and over again with Mother Earth.

“Gaia experiences losing the barrier between herself and the universe, gone for a moment.”

He then tells her she’s busy and she leaves. We hear the lyrics “...she gives it all away...” sung as Gaia walks down the street into a wheat field, showing how often one does this and it's
almost routine nature. Throughout the scene, she begins to ignore everything around her and begins feeling the wind and enjoying the field. The music fades into the background and she becomes one with the world around her.

Gaia experiences losing the barrier between herself and the universe, gone for a moment. The film then cuts to her in her home, cleaning, and centering herself. As she reads a book while using a vibrator, her sister calls and her mother casts fear and doubt over her current dreams / pursuits in life. This visibly affects Gaia, throwing off her grounding once again. However, instead of going off on her mother, she
chooses to takes it in. This is reminiscent of how we speak to spirit when we are angry, but
don’t receive the same energy in return.

“They continue to laugh and enjoy each
other’s company as the sky above them dims.”

Gaia’s friends then message her while she enjoys her noodles listening to music, uplifting her mood in the process. These messages from her friends pick her up and fill her with joy, enfolded in the same green dress since the opening scene. She drinks wine with her friends in the backseat and we harken back to the opening scene. Much like everything within life’s grasp, everything in our story comes back full circle. They continue to laugh and enjoy each other’s company as the sky above them dims. After arriving at a beach, Gaia seems disconnected. She is surrounded by loved ones but is seeking a deeper connection. A main theme which runs throughout the film, it demonstrates how we continually try to fill the void instead of connecting with ourselves. A friend pulls Gaia to the side, aware of the disconnect in her behavior. They sit by the seashore hoping to tide her over, but Gaia craves more. Once she heads into the ocean, she’s finally home. Gaia is engulfed by the universe, becoming fully grounded. This is a representation of the universe experiencing itself fully and unapologetically. A soul wholly merges and becomes one with the universe.

The scene then cuts to Gaia surrounded by five men of different shades and backgrounds. They begin to dance together in harmony. This showcases the celebration of coming home and being welcomed by the universe, not by virtue of death, but love and consciousness instead. No matter what your background is, we are all connected to Mother Earth. She continues to dance while the song “Black Molasses” begins playing and the love affair continues up until the end of the track. The sequence of Gaia interacting and influencing the men who surround her with dance is beautiful and unlike anything I have seen before. Before long, Gaia is suddenly called back into reality, while her friend calls her name to bring her back to shore.

The film ends as Gaia and her friend leave the beach while the credits roll. Black Molasses is captivating from beginning to end. Anyone can relate to Gaia’s thoughts and actions throughout the film, which I believe was the filmmaker’s intention. The integration of her beliefs as thematic plot points and imagery in the film were perfectly executed, especially in the fact that we are the universe experiencing itself & we all share similar perspectives.

Written by Scarlett Fae

Directed by Scarlett Fae and Nathan Shadrach

Cinematography by Scarlett Fae and Nathan Shadrach

Edited by Scarlett Fae and Nathan Shadrach 

Here’s the link to watch the full short film: Black Molasses
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