An Illinois farming family on the verge of collapse confronts an uncertain future, and a tick finds a host. “Gossamer,” directed by Charlie Schmidlin is a heavy drama exploring familial hardship, generational loyalty, and a shifting society. Drawing on his own family’s experience, Schmidlin renders the story with specificity and pathos, an elegy to a lost time. Imani has returned to the family farm after the death of her mother — the fences are rotting, livestock go missing, the surrounding subdivisions creep ever closer. Unbeknownst to Imani, her father is considering selling the property. Imani is torn between worlds, realizing the vast workload and perseverance needed to keep up the farm running, but devastated at the prospect of losing such a huge piece of her life. Loaded with implicit context (as of 2002, only 1% of American rural land was owned by black farmers), it’s a quietly heartbreaking story of a family reckoning with the prospect of giving up the fight.
Writer, Director: Charlie Schmidlin. Cast: Krystel McNeil, Anthony Irons, Dan Waller. Director of Photography: Olivia Aquilina. Producers: Lissette Feliciano, Rothwell Polk. Production Designer: Abigail Childs. Composers: Michael Sachs, Kim Mayo.