REVIEW: Last Minutes with ODEN [2009]

“Love’s ultimate meaning”

There isn’t really much to say about Eliot Rausch’s depiction of Jason Wood’s final moments with his cancer-stricken dog ODEN. Spanning a short six minutes, the tale shares an emotional voiceover about the owner’s eventual acceptance to end his friend and companion’s suffering. Limping on only three legs, but still as loyal as ever to Wood and his friends, ODEN’s time had come; his job of serving unconditionally was completed.

The film may be emotional and unforgiving in its depiction of the grief death inflicts, even if it is planned for and known, but it is also a stunning piece of art. Shot beautifully by Luke Korver and Matt Taylor, the movie uses stunning angles and composition to stay close in on the details of both the man and the dog. You see the acceptance in the watery eyes of ODEN and the pain in Wood as he bicycles around the city, taking a drag from his cigarette. I loved some of the footage of him biking on the right side of the frame while the camera follows in front as he moves forward.

It’s a pretty straightforward piece that speaks for itself. And, for me, a guy that really never saw the meaning in this kind of loving relationship with an animal, it still resonates with that feeling of uncompromising loss. It definitely shows what kind of a connection man can have with pet, especially seeing this tattooed ‘tough guy’ show his true colors, unable to be John Wayne like he wishes. But really, his breaking down only becomes that much more of a tribute to his friend.

Watch it for yourself:

Last Minutes with ODEN from phos pictures on Vimeo.

Last Minutes with ODEN 8/10

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