Afrofuturism: Blackness Revisualized


The Abandon

Sterling K. Brown stars in this short film. When five friends go on an annual hiking trip, things take a surprising turn when they learn a global event has changed the world. Now they must navigate interpersonal dramas as well as their own survival.

AIRED: July 30, 2021 | 0:16:57

[ Engine shuts off ]

[ Humming ]

All right. [ Sighs ]

[ Humming ]

[ Birds chirping ]

[ Bird squawking ]

[ Warbling ]

[ Dennis laughs ]

Kendall: Hey, look, I don't care what you fools say.

What reason does a cop have to stop me

from running through a park with my dog?

Maybe you fit the description of a dog-walking Negro

who was last seen stealing some expensive dog shit.

[ Laughs ]

Besides, cops have a job to do.

As attorneys, we should respect that.

Well, in your case, unemployed attorney.

Hey, Craig, talk to your boy.

He's just fucking with you, Kendall.

Yeah, but this ain't no fucking-with-you conversation.

This is serious. You might get hit in the eye

if you don't dole out some respect to the conversation.

-[ Whimpering ] -Keep it up. Keep it up.

Everybody, calm down.

We are alums of the East Side Boys Club.

We don't fight.

-We build. -We build.

Dennis: That's right.

[ Cellphone buzzes ]

Yo, who brought that cellphone?

Oh, come on, man.

Me. See, man, look, dude.

We do this every year, right?

No significant others,

no alcohol, no blunts, no cellphones.

Me and Asha are having problems.

You and A-- Come on, man. Y'all are divorced.

Let that go.

Wow, this dude is following her on Twitter.

You stalker!

Craig, I know you're not fronting.

I mean, you stalk the dude that you're living with, right?

Stalks him. And just...

Dude's name is Vince. You've met him.

I just can't wrap my mind around

why you would leave fine-assed Stephanie

to hook up with some... -Leave it alone, brother.

My life, my choice.

Aaron: All right, all right, all right, ladies.

Put away the Glocks.

Hey, there's a spot up there.

[ Loud warbling ]

-Geez! -Whoa!



What was that?

What the fuck was that?

This baby lost power on us. This shit's weird.

Was that lightning? [ Engine sputters ]

That was like some weird global-warming type shit.

Jeff said there's an Air Force base around here.

Air Force base? That?

See if she'll start up again.

[ Engine starts ]

All right. -That's what I'm talkin' about.

All right, scared little punks.

Which one of y'all need a change of underwear?

Commando, brother. Commando.

-I'm dry. -All day.

Twice on Sundays.

I don't need to know that.

[ Laughs ]

[ Indistinct conversations ]

Man: Fuck off.

[ Conversations continue ]

This is definitely Jeff's car.

Dude left a note.

Says he got here at 2:00 p.m.

Probably went scouting for some farm-fed,

fresh-air Birkenstock pussy.

[ Laughter ]

We should go find him...

before something grabs him and eats him.


Yo, Jeff!

Hey, where did you get that bottle, D?

Asha's got one just like it.

Oh, my girl Shayna gave it to me.

She likes phallic symbols.

Yo, I thought you was dating Roxanne.

Oh, I am.

But Shayna respects my alcohol-free lifestyle.

Keeps me on the water tip.

How many days it's been without the yak?


That's two years, fool. Make it to three.

[ Leaves rustle ]

Yo, Jeff, stop playing, man!

[ Cellphone buzzes ]

-Yo. -Yo, Kendall,

give me the phone, man.

Yo, give me the phone. Kendall, hand over the phone.

Aaron: Yo, what's wrong with you?

-It's Asha. -What about her?

There was some kind of light.

Some kind of bright light was over the city.

People are disappearing.

This fool is on smack.


He's dead. Jeff is dead.

No, he's not. Jeff!

Give him mouth-to-mouth.

Dennis: Hell, I'll do it.

[ Man gasps ]

It's empty.

-What? -His mouth is empty. It's gone.

There's nothing there. It's gone.

[ Warbling ]

What was that?

Why are you looking at me

like I'm supposed to know what that is?

This is some bullshit. We should get out of here. I'm leaving.

We can't leave Jeff. Hey, fucking Jeff is dead.

We ain't leaving Jeff out here like this.

Are you crazy? -I will put him on my back.

[ Warbling, growling ]

Let's get the hell out of here.

We can't leave, Jeff, man.

[ Roaring ]


[ Thud ]

Pump the gas, man. I'm trying, man!

Come on! It's coming, man!

Pump the gas.

Kendall! Where's Dennis?

Dude, where's Dennis?

He fell.

He fell where?

He fell down a cliff.

We were running, and he slipped. I looked down for him,

but I couldn't see him. We got to go back for him.

We have to go back for him.

This motherfucker... Hey! Hey!

We just left out friend out there in the woods.

Something took his tongue and teeth.

The motherfucking debate can wait!

Now, what did Asha say?

I must have dropped it.

What do you remember from the tweet?

That people were disappearing.

There's some kind of light everywhere and...

And something killed Jeff.

And they're trying to kill us.

I'm gonna die in these woods.

Yo, I got a good job. I won't take that track, motherfucker.

I want to get out of -- Everybody shut the fuck up!

[ Loud warbling ]

Craig: What happened to Aaron? Did he get out?

Damn it, what happened to Aaron? What is this, man?

What is going on? Start the car.

[ Key clicks ]

It's dead. No, what do you mean, "it's dead"?

Try it again! I don't know.

[ Key clicks ]

I don't know. It's dead.

[ Vehicle door opens ]

Hey, where are you going?


We need your phone. We'll find your phone.

We'll look for Dennis, and we'll come back for Aaron.

Then let's get out of here.

What the fuck are we waiting for?

There it is.

Shit, there's no service.

Check to see if she left any tweets

before service was lost. Why?

If there were any updates,

they'd be there, right, in the queue.

Check to see what's in queue.

Oh, baby.

Read them out loud, man.

"There's a bright light.

Don't look at it."

Why not? Does it kill you?

Is that what happened to Aaron?

Dennis: Hey, Craig!

What was that?

Over here!

That's Dennis. Hold on, hold on.

How do you know it's Dennis? That could be anything.

That's Dennis, man!



I'm in pain, ma'am.

Can you move everything?

It's broke.

[ Groans ]

We've got to get you out of here.

What happened?


We got to go.


-Aaah! -Hey.



[ Warbling, howling ]

We got to go.

Hey, hey. Get up.

What are you doing? Hey, what is that?

He can't have that.

Kendall, he's a recovering alcoholic.

Do you have a better suggestion, Craig?

Back the fuck up, man!

[ Coughing ]

You all right?


What did you put in my mouth?

It's whiskey.

Why'd you do that? To help, nigga.

I'm an alcoholic, asshole.

[ Leaves rustle ]


Fuck. Come on.

Come on, come on, come on.

All right. Hey, hey. Hold on.

All right.


Anybody home?

Go ahead.

[ Switch clicking ]

All right.

Nothing works in here.

We should take some of this and get the hell out of here.

I can't walk, man. I'm hurtin', Craig.

-You gonna have to try, homey. -No.

Hey, we can't stay here. We're wasting time.

I mean, what happened to these people anyway, huh?

Everybody disappeared.

Check your phone again, see if they're serious.

No, man. There's no service.

We need to get back to the city.

I said, "I can't move"!

Let's eat something, huh? Get some energy.

Find you some pain-killers. I don't want to eat.

I don't want to eat. I don't want to eat.

We need to make a plan.

What do you suggest we do, Kendall?

Dennis says he can't move.

My wife's out there in that.

Your wife? So what?

I can't get in touch with Vince or my parents.

Dennis has a son.

Aaron is still missing. Jeff is dead.

Who the fuck are you?

We all have somebody out in that.

None of us even know what that is.

Now, I suggest we eat something, sit here,

and acquire a sense of safety before we run off anywhere.

Fuck the both of you.

Yeah. Back at you.

You shouldn't leave, Kendall.

Asshole. Kendall!

He pushed me off that hill.


I screwed Asha.

When we went up to the Hudson to Jeff's...

and you was still with Stephanie.

What are you talking about?

We got together, okay?

And everybody was sleeping.

We always flirted with each other. Oh, God.

I mean, they were going through a divorce anyway.

Oh, God. Does he know?

He pushed me off the hill.

Gave me that alcohol on purpose.

He's a warped dude, man, and you know it.

Okay, okay, look.

Something's happened in the city.

We're out here in the middle of nowhere,

being chased by God knows what.

And that is all we are gonna think on right now.


[ Cellphone thuds ]

[ Knock on door ]

[ Knock on door ]

[ Warbling ]

What is it?

Look out back.


Look out the back fucking window!



It's out there.

Whatever it is, it's out there.

Close that fucking door.


[ Lock engages ]

[ Door slams ]


Dennis: Craig?

Let's go.

They know we in here. We should run.

How can I run?

We just went run right through them

and make our way back to the city.

I can't run! Well, whatcan you do?!

Oh, wait. I know.

You can sleep with my wife.

Fuck you.

Tell the truth, right?

You slept with Asha, didn't you?

Yeah, motherfucker.

[ Screams ]

[ Breathing raggedly ]

I can't feel my tongue.

You leaving or not?

What about my leg?

[ Gasping ]

What about my leg?

Fuck you and your leg.

Yeah, you heard me. Fuck you.


[ Distorted talking ]



[ Birds chirping ]

[ Coughs ]









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