Nobody talks about my story. I don’t even know it myself.
RIP to the girl I used to be. Whoever she was, she loved to ride horses. I can remember only back to moments before my death. It was an unexceptionally damp, paper-thin, cloud covered day, the kind where nothing makes a shadow and you can never tell what time it really is. Sweat made my white polyester dress and fingerless skeleton gloves stick to my skin. All the other girls wore tight jeans and bejeweled t- shirts with phrases like “C’est la Vie” on them. In the ring, I held the leather reins tight, guiding my tawny horse around the fence, rounding the corners elegantly. First a walk, then trot, then a canter. Slow down, walk, trot, canter. In class we were learning how to control ourselves so we could better control the horses. Squeeze your thighs, release. Dig your ankles into her belly, kick. Shadow was walking slow, and a stupid song was stuck in my head. In the moment that he took off in such a jolt, the song stopped. I bounced off the saddle like a trampoline and slid down his left side, skidding into the dirt. My long dress, all tangled up in the stirrups, towed me along under the body of the galloping animal. I was rolling and dragging and fully embalmed in the thudding vibrations of hooves hitting the ground. Finally, one hoof met my face, and crushed my skull.
What’s it like to die? I still don’t know. I tried, but Shadow wouldn’t let me. After the pressure on my head subsided, waves of burgundy flooded into my sight. It wasn’t so bad, bobbing around in this tepid, viscous goop. Like floating in a lazy river, it pushed me forward slowly.
You’re not going anywhere you little bitch! This is for eating my father!
Out of the bubbly goop came Shadow’s head lurching towards me. He crunched down on my foot with his shiny chrome teeth, and swirled his tongue around my toes, pulling me further and further until my skin felt air. I landed belly up in the soggy gravel, seeing the clouds again. None of the trainers or girls were running to me. They weren’t crying or shrieking, filled with unbearable grief.
What’s it like to be dead? No one knows my story. Being undead is being bored at a ranch for eternity. I can’t speak or ride, or even taste the grilled horse burgers anymore. I wander around waiting for another horse to take revenge. At least then I might have someone to play with.
— Christina Gigliotti
WILD FILLY STORY, 22 min, 2020 Written and directed by Josefin Arnell
Production: Merel Noorlander
Cinematographer: Lukas Heistinger
Camera Assistant: Matteo Casarin
Location Sound: Joris Prakken
Sound Design and Mastering: Alexandra Agiv
Colour corrections: Lukas Heistinger
Music: Astrid Gnosis
Assistant: Elina Birkehag
Fight scene choreography: Rutger Buiter
Editing Support: Eline Bakker
Main actors: Naomi van Tilburg, Naomi Pina, Bianca Buccioli, Yara Brunink, Amy Romeé De Best
Supported by: UKS (Young Artist ́s Society Oslo)
Amsterdams Fonds Voor De Kunst
Thanks to: Rhea Dall, Petra Heck, Jessyca R Hauser, Miriam Kongstad, Sophie Lee, Special thanks to Eoghan Ryan and Alexandra Tveit Eltina and Frank and everyone at Pony Club Floradorp Vytautas Viržbickas, Matas Janošonis, Contemporary Art Centre, Vilnius.