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Archive of Past Films

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ALCOHOL ADDICTION

28 Days Photo28 DAYS

A journalist who's become too much the life of the party finds a new lease on life in a drug and alcohol treatment center. NARRATIVE; 103 minutes. Director: Betty Thomas. Starring: Sandra Bullock, Viggo Mortensen, Steve Buscemi, Elizabeth Perkins, Diane Ladd; 2000.

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ALZHEIMER’S DISEASE & DEMENTIA

ALIVE INSIDE + FORGET ME NOTS Musical Performance

FORGET ME NOTS MUSICAL PERFORMANCE

Special short concert by the Forget Me Nots, made up of members of the Lee family. Father Ben Lee is the new Chair of the Psychiatry Department at the University of Rochester Medical School.

ALIVE INSIDE FILM SCREENING
DOCUMENTARY, 78 minutes.
Directed and written by Michael Rossato-Bennett


This Sundance Film Festival Audience Favorite, shot partially here in Rochester at St. John's Home, is a moving documentary chronicling the remarkable story of how social worker, Dan Cohen, was able to awaken memories -with carefully personalized playlists on re-purposed IPods - for thousands of Alzheimer's patients and others suffering from memory loss, dementia, severe anxiety or other ailments.

What started as a pilot program at four New York long-term care facilities is now in 10 different countries at 4,500 sites. Twenty-one states have made Cohen's Music and Memory program part of their public policies, and musical artists such as Elvis Costello, Carole King and Kenny Chesney have come on board to champion this breakthrough.

Special Guests: Robin Lombardo, CTRS, MS, CDP, Northeast Regional Director, Music & Memory, Joy Kaminski, MT-BC, Board Certified Music Therapist, Rochester Psychiatric Center, G. Allen Power, M.D., Schlegel Chair in Aging and Dementia Innovation, Schlegel—U. Waterloo Research Institute for Aging, Ben Lee, M.D., Chair, Dept. of Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center, Anne McKenna, St. John's Home

Co-sponsored by:

Awards:

  • Audience Award
    - Sundance Film Festival
    - Berkshire International Film Festival
    - Calgary Underground Film Festival
    - Milwaukee Film Festival
    - Provincetown International Film Festival
    - Sedona International Film Festival
  • Special Award, Boston Film Festival
  • Special Jury Prize, Art and Activism, Nashville Film Festival
  • Best Documentary o Fort Myers Beach Film Festival o Master of Art Film Festival o Milano International Film Festival
  • Nominee, Grand Jury Prize, Sundance Film Festival

Reviews:

A gloriously inspirational film documenting music’s healing power in Alzheimer patients. HOLLYWOOD REPORTER

Joyous, unexpectedly uplifting. LA TIMES

VIEW ALIVE INSIDE MOVIE TRAILER

 

COMPLAINTS OF A DUTIFUL DAUGHTER

Complaints of a Dutiful Daughter PhotoWith profound insight and a healthy dose of levity, Deborah Hoffman’s Oscar-nominated documentary chronicles the various stages of a mother's Alzheimer's Disease and the evolution of a daughter's response to the illness. Neither depressing nor medical, the film is a life-affirming exploration of family relations, aging, change, the meaning of memory and love. DOCUMENTARY; 44 minutes. Director: Deborah Hoffman;1994.

Awards include:

  • Nominated, Academy Award, Best Documentary
  • Nominated, Directors Guild of America, Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Documentary
  • Caligari Film Award, Berlin International Film Festival
  • Teddy Award, Berlin International Film Festival
  • Peabody Award
  • Nomination, Grand Jury Prize, Sundance Film Festival

VIEW TRAILER



ANXIETY

HEAVEN IS A TRAFFIC JAM ON THE 405
Documentary, 2017, 40 minutes
Directed by Frank Stiefel.

Brilliant artist Mindy Alper is represented by one of LA’s top galleries, and her body of raw, emotional work reveals a lifetime of extreme depression and anxiety. Through electroshock therapy, multiple commitments to mental institutions and a 10-year period without speech, her only consistent means of communicating has been to channel her hyper self-awareness into drawings and sculpture of powerful psychological clarity.

Through an examination of her work, interviews, reenactments,
the building of an eight and a half foot papier-mâché bust of her beloved psychiatrist, we learn how she has emerged from a life of darkness and isolation to a life that includes love, trust and laughter.

Awards:

  • 2018 ACADEMY AWARD! Best Documentary, Short Subject
  • Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
    - Jury Award
    - Audience Award
  • Austin Film Festival
    - Jury Award
    - Audience Award
    - Hiscox Courage Award
  • International Documentary Film Festival: Artistic Inspiration Award
    and many more

Reviews:

Powerfully confronts the reality of living with mental illness and negotiating its pain every day, and poignantly realizes art’s ability to express unintelligible experiences through Stiefel’s eccentric approach that appropriately finds a visual equivalent to Alper’s language… What a remarkable work of art. POV Magazine

A playful and beautiful treatise on the power of art as therapy and the uniquely human ability to transform pain into expression. Director Frank Stiefel deserves recognition for never ghettoizing Mindy or her work as “outsider” art, as others have and would… Film Inquiry

VIEW HEAVEN IS A TRAFFIC JAM MOVIE TRAILER

Screened with:
OC87 RECOVERY DIARIES - Selected Shorts
Documentary, various lengths.

Our friends from the OC87 Recovery Diaries join us once again from Philadelphia to present several new short films that tell dramatic and powerful stories of mental health recovery, aided by the help of art, writing, music and film.

Special Guests: GABE NATHAN, Editor-in-Chief, OC87 Recovery Diaries, Leslie Werlin, Creative Wellness Opportunities, Chacku Mathai, Executive Director, Mental Health Association

Preceded by:
Awakening - Art Exhibit
Special juried art exhibit curated by the Mental Health Association’s Creative Wellness Opportunities; Executive Director: Veronica Weider; Art Consultant: Leslie Werlin.


ART AS THERAPY

BRUSHES WITH LIFE: ART, ARTISTS & MENTAL ILLNESS

Special Guests: MIKE VENY, Motivational Speaker; OC87 Recovery Diaries; GABE NATHAN, Editor-in-Chief, OC87 Recovery Diaries; Elyse Capell, MS, LCAT, Licensed Art Therapist; Charmaine Wheatley, visiting artist; Evelyn Cammanaro, local artist

Special juried art exhibit curated by the Mental Health Association’s Creative Wellness Opportunities; Executive Director: Veronica Weider; Art Consultant: Leslie Werlin.

BRUSHES WITH LIFE: ART, ARTISTS & MENTAL ILLNESS
DOCUMENTARY, 24 minutes. Directed by Philip Brubaker, Bigger Boat Productions.

Mental illness and creativity have been linked for many years. In Brushes with Life, eight artists who struggle with Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder and other brain disorders talk candidly about how their art helps them heal. All the artists are brought together by the Brushes With Life art gallery, which shows only work by artists with mental illness.

Screened with:
OC87 RECOVERY DIARIES - Selected Shorts
DOCUMENTARY, various lengths. Produced and directed by Bud Clayman & Glenn Holsten. OC87 Recovery Diaries presents four short films that tell dramatic and powerful stories of mental health recovery. A young woman with bipolar and Aspergers Syndrome finds an intimate connection with horses, a man bravely interviews his own depression, and two women touched by mental illness miraculously take flight in these life-affirming films.

PORTRAITS OF LIFE
Follow visiting artist Charmaine Wheatley as she connects with people through capturing their image and thoughts onto painted portraits that celebrate the complexity of their lives and puts a face to those living with mental illness. Directed by Don Casper.

 

Crazy Art photoCRAZY ART

This compelling documentary tells the story of three talented artists with schizophrenia as they search for identity, acceptance and recovery through their unique and thought-provoking art. A treat for the art history buff, the film explores how artists like Van Gogh reached brilliant (if terrifying) heights when their psychiatric symptoms were peaking. Very much a study in hope, the film shows how contemporary artists can work not only to channel their psychiatric experiences into transcendent art, but can nourish their mental health in the process. DOCUMENTARY; 58 minutes. Director: Justin Thomas Rowe; 2009.

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DAD’S IN HEAVEN WITH NIXON
Special guests: Film subject Christopher Murray & filmmaker Thomas Murray

Dad's in Heaven with Nixon photoEmmy Award-winning writer Thomas Murray tells the complex and compelling story of his family’s journey to ensure his brother Christopher, diagnosed with Autism, lead a fulfilling and independent life. Unfolding against a backdrop of paternal Bipolar Disorder and Depression, Christopher’s emergence as an acclaimed artist is an intensely moving story that is ultimately about the triumph and strength of the human spirit. DOCUMENTARY; 86 minutes. Directed by Thomas Murray; 2010.

“A rich, bittersweet tale”
New York Times

“Intensely moving”
Newsday

VIEW TRAILER


DEEJ
DOCUMENTARY, 72 minutes, 2017
Co-directors: Robert Rooy & David James Savarese
Animation: Em Cooper
Words: David James Savarese

Abandoned by his birth parents and unable to speak for himself, DJ Savarese ("Deej") found not only a loving family but also a life in words, which he types on a text-to-voice synthesizer. As he makes his way through high school and dreams of college, he confronts the terrors of his past, obstacles to inclusion, and the sometimes paralyzing beauty of his own senses. In his advocacy on behalf of other nonspeaking autistics, he embraces filmmaking and poetry, and discovers what having a voice can truly mean.

Through the first-of-its-kind collaboration between veteran filmmaker Robert Rooy and a nonspeaking young man with Autism, the film is a story told largely from the inside – by DJ, and not by his parents or autism experts or even the camera. At its core, Deej reflects the level of participation that disability rights advocates insist upon: "Nothing about us without us."

Special guests: DJ Savarese, Dr. Lori Jeanne Peloquin, Rachel Rosner, AutismUp

Awards:

  • Jury Award, Best Feature Documentary:
    - Indigo Moon Film Festival
    - Chagrin Documentary Film Festival
    - Superfest International Disability Film Festival
  • Audience Award, Newburyport Documentary Film Festival

Reviews:

The best film on autism I’ve ever seen…authentic from start to finish. Brent White, Adult Transition Program Director, Ala Costa Centers, Berkeley, CA

A giant leap forward in shifting public perception. Ari Ne’eman, Co-founder, ASAN and Founder, WeSupport.com

In my 40 years of research, teaching and advocacy in the field of autism, I've seen nothing to top it. Anne M. Donnellan, Ph.D., Professor Emerita, Universities of Wisconsin and San Diego

DJ cannot speak with his voice, and yet his words rise up in a powerful, poetic voice of advocacy. Kirsten Haugen, Working Group Coordinator, The World Forum Foundation on Early Care and Education

A beautifully rendered testimony to the power of meaningful inclusion in education. Cheryl A. Theis, MA, Education Advocate, Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

A brilliant, moving and innovative film. Eric Zigman, Executive Director, Golden Gate Regional Center, San Francisco, CA

Opens up the world of autism like nothing I’ve ever seen. Louise Kennedy, Senior Producer, Arts Engagement, WBUR

VIEW ANIMATED CLIP OF POEM “SWOON”

VIEW DEEJ MOVIE TRAILER


HEAVEN IS A TRAFFIC JAM ON THE 405
Documentary, 2017, 40 minutes
Directed by Frank Stiefel.

Brilliant artist Mindy Alper is represented by one of LA’s top galleries, and her body of raw, emotional work reveals a lifetime of extreme depression and anxiety. Through electroshock therapy, multiple commitments to mental institutions and a 10-year period without speech, her only consistent means of communicating has been to channel her hyper self-awareness into drawings and sculpture of powerful psychological clarity.

Through an examination of her work, interviews, reenactments,
the building of an eight and a half foot papier-mâché bust of her beloved psychiatrist, we learn how she has emerged from a life of darkness and isolation to a life that includes love, trust and laughter.

Awards:

  • 2018 ACADEMY AWARD! Best Documentary, Short Subject
  • Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
    - Jury Award
    - Audience Award
  • Austin Film Festival
    - Jury Award
    - Audience Award
    - Hiscox Courage Award
  • International Documentary Film Festival: Artistic Inspiration Award
    and many more

Reviews:

Powerfully confronts the reality of living with mental illness and negotiating its pain every day, and poignantly realizes art’s ability to express unintelligible experiences through Stiefel’s eccentric approach that appropriately finds a visual equivalent to Alper’s language… What a remarkable work of art. POV Magazine

A playful and beautiful treatise on the power of art as therapy and the uniquely human ability to transform pain into expression. Director Frank Stiefel deserves recognition for never ghettoizing Mindy or her work as “outsider” art, as others have and would… Film Inquiry

VIEW HEAVEN IS A TRAFFIC JAM MOVIE TRAILER

Preceded by:
Awakening - Art Exhibit
Special juried art exhibit curated by the Mental Health Association’s Creative Wellness Opportunities; Executive Director: Veronica Weider; Art Consultant: Leslie Werlin.

IN A DREAM

In a Dream photoOver the past four decades, artist Isaiah Zagar has covered more than 50,000 square feet of Philadelphia with stunning mosaic murals. In a Dream is an award-winning documentary chronicling his remarkable work, his mental health struggles as well as his often tumultuous relationship with his family. DOCUMENTARY; 80 minutes. Directed by Jeremiah Zagar; 2008.

Awards include:

  • Emmy Nomination
  • Audience Award, SXSW Film Festival
  • Jury Prize, Woodstock Film Festival
  • Charles E. Guggenheim Emerging Artist Award, Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
  • Artistic Vision Award, Big Sky Film Festival

VIEW TRAILER


OC87 RECOVERY DIARIES: SELECTED SHORT FILMS [Variety]
Documentary, various lengths.

Our friends from the OC87 Recovery Diaries join us once again from Philadelphia to present several new short films that tell dramatic and powerful stories of mental health recovery, aided by the help of art, writing, music and film.

Special Guests: GABE NATHAN, Editor-in-Chief, OC87 Recovery Diaries, Leslie Werlin, Creative Wellness Opportunities, Chacku Mathai, Executive Director, Mental Health Association

 

OF TWO MINDS
Special guest: Film subject Carlton Davis

Of Two Minds photoOf Two Minds explores the extraordinary lives, struggles and successes of three unique and compelling people – artist/architect Carlton Davis, journalist Liz Sikol and stylist Cheri Keating – living with Bipolar Disorder in America today. Through a combination of intimate verité and revealing interviews, the viewer experiences what it feels like to be Bipolar – from exquisite feelings of grandiosity and sensuality to the depths of despair and depression. A journey from the painful to the painfully funny, Of Two Minds puts a human face on the illness, opening an engaging, harrowing and perception-changing view on those all around us who live in Bipolar's shadows...our sisters and brothers, parents and friends, and ourselves. DOCUMENTARY; 89 minutes. Directed by Douglas Blush & Lisa J. Klein; 2012.

“Intelligent...compassionate”
Variety

Awards include:

  • Los Angeles Grand Jury Award, Best Documentary, United Film Festival

VIEW TRAILER


PACK UP YOUR SORROWS
Special guest: Film subject/Co-Producer Meg Hutchinson

NEW YORK STATE PREMIERE! On a cross-country journey to interview such leading voices in the mental health field as Kay Redfield Jamison and Scott Stossel (as well as explore alternative therapies with such luminaries as Lama Migmar Tseten, Harvard Buddhist Chaplain & Director of The Sakya Institute for Buddhist Studies), singer/songwriter Meg Hutchinson weaves together a story of Bipolar Disorder, hope and transformation. With Hutchinson's music and stunning images of the natural world guiding the way, the film is a unique and moving meditation on achieving wellness. DOCUMENTARY; 96 minutes. Directed by Rob Stegman & Todd Kwait; 2015.

OFFICIAL SITE & TRAILER


ROCKS IN MY POCKETS
Special guest: Animator Signe Baumane

Rocks In My Pockets photoSigne Baumane’s brilliantly animated exploration of her family’s multi-generational struggle with depression and suicide is a story of "mystery and redemption... packed with visual metaphors, surreal images and a twisted sense of humor. It is a tale full of art, women, strange daring stories, Latvian accents, history, nature, adventure and more." Don't miss this exceptional evening with the delightful Baumane, who is known to throw hand painted paper mache rocks into the audience as gifts. ANIMATION; 88 minutes. Directed and animated by Signe Baumane; 2014.

“Told with remorseless psychological intelligence, wicked irony and an acerbic sense of humor”
The New York Times

“Boasting a narrative of extraordinary complexity and density, stuffed with irony, humor and tales-within-tales... imaginative... fascinating and very personal”
Variety

"Signe Baumane examines her family members’ history with mental illness (as well as her own struggles) with humor, delicacy and eye-catching animation techniques... Her commitment and talent is overwhelming.”
USA Today

Awards/nominations include:

  • Karlovy Vary International Film Festival: Winner, International Film Critics Award

OFFICIAL SITE


TURNING THE ART WORLD INSIDE OUT

After the huge success of shows in Venice, London and Paris, interest in Outsider Art has never been higher. But what exactly is it? How do we define it? And who are its gurus and leading lights? The BBC’s Alan Yentob explores this captivating, compelling and magical alternative art universe, embarking on a worldwide journey to meet some visionary creators, and their equally obsessive collectors and enthusiasts. DOCUMENTARY; 70 minutes. Directed by Jack Cocker; 2013.

outsider art

outsider art

Outsider Art Exhibit



AUTISM SPECTRUM

AUTISM: THE MUSICAL

Autism the MusicalDirector Tricia Regan’s Emmy-winning documentary follows five LA children over the course of six months, capturing the struggles and triumphs of their family lives, and observing how a musical production gives them a comfort zone in which they can explore their creative sides. DOCUMENTARY; 94 minutes. Directed by Tricia Regan; 2007.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE


THE BOY INSIDE: A JOURNEY INTO AUTISM

Boy Inside photoFilmmaker and mother Marianne Kaplan turns the camera on her own family, creating a rare and intimate portrait of living with Asperger's Syndrome, a form of high-functioning autism characterized by socially inappropriate behavior. The film follows a year in the life of Kaplan's son Adam, as the 12-year-old tries desperately to find a friend in the midst of bullies, insensitive classmates and parents with at-times frayed nerves. "Filled with love, courage, persistence and wonderful people." DOCUMENTARY, 47 minutes. Directed by Marianne Kaplan; 2007.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE


DAD’S IN HEAVEN WITH NIXON
Special guest: Film subject Christopher Murray & filmmaker Thomas Murray

Dad's In Heaven with Nixon photoEmmy-Award winning writer Thomas Murray tells the complex and compelling story of his family’s journey to ensure his brother Christopher, diagnosed with Autism, lead a fulfilling and independent life. Unfolding against a backdrop of paternal Bipolar Disorder and Depression, Christopher’s emergence as an acclaimed artist is an intensely moving story that is ultimately about the triumph and strength of the human spirit. DOCUMENTARY; 86 minutes. Directed by Thomas Murray; 2010.

“A rich, bittersweet tale”
New York Times

“Intensely moving”
Newsday

VIEW TRAILER


DEEJ
DOCUMENTARY, 72 minutes, 2017
Co-directors: Robert Rooy & David James Savarese
Animation: Em Cooper
Words: David James Savarese

Abandoned by his birth parents and unable to speak for himself, DJ Savarese ("Deej") found not only a loving family but also a life in words, which he types on a text-to-voice synthesizer. As he makes his way through high school and dreams of college, he confronts the terrors of his past, obstacles to inclusion, and the sometimes paralyzing beauty of his own senses. In his advocacy on behalf of other nonspeaking autistics, he embraces filmmaking and poetry, and discovers what having a voice can truly mean.

Through the first-of-its-kind collaboration between veteran filmmaker Robert Rooy and a nonspeaking young man with Autism, the film is a story told largely from the inside – by DJ, and not by his parents or autism experts or even the camera. At its core, Deej reflects the level of participation that disability rights advocates insist upon: "Nothing about us without us."

Special guests: DJ Savarese, Dr. Lori Jeanne Peloquin, Rachel Rosner, AutismUp

Awards:

  • Jury Award, Best Feature Documentary:
    - Indigo Moon Film Festival
    - Chagrin Documentary Film Festival
    - Superfest International Disability Film Festival
  • Audience Award, Newburyport Documentary Film Festival

Reviews:

The best film on autism I’ve ever seen…authentic from start to finish. Brent White, Adult Transition Program Director, Ala Costa Centers, Berkeley, CA

A giant leap forward in shifting public perception. Ari Ne’eman, Co-founder, ASAN and Founder, WeSupport.com

In my 40 years of research, teaching and advocacy in the field of autism, I've seen nothing to top it. Anne M. Donnellan, Ph.D., Professor Emerita, Universities of Wisconsin and San Diego

DJ cannot speak with his voice, and yet his words rise up in a powerful, poetic voice of advocacy. Kirsten Haugen, Working Group Coordinator, The World Forum Foundation on Early Care and Education

A beautifully rendered testimony to the power of meaningful inclusion in education. Cheryl A. Theis, MA, Education Advocate, Disability Rights Education and Defense Fund

A brilliant, moving and innovative film. Eric Zigman, Executive Director, Golden Gate Regional Center, San Francisco, CA

Opens up the world of autism like nothing I’ve ever seen. Louise Kennedy, Senior Producer, Arts Engagement, WBUR

VIEW ANIMATED CLIP OF POEM “SWOON”

VIEW DEEJ MOVIE TRAILER


THE FAMILY NEXT DOOR

Special guest: Film subjects Donna & Donny Lund; filmmaker Barry Reese

Family Next Door photoDon and Donna Lund went from the “perfect couple” at Yale to the parents of two boys with Autism that others avoided. As the story unfolds over 16 months, we become witness to a story of unconditional love, struggles mixed with joys, altered expectations tinged with hope. The family’s grace, patience and determination are at the core of this moving documentary. DOCUMENTARY; 83 minutes. Directed by Michael Messner & Barry Reese; 2014.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE


MARY AND MAX

Mary and Max

Don’t let the Claymation fool you – this is not a simple tale for children. Rather, this darkly humorous and often slyly subversive tale of a 20-year-old pen-pal friendship between a lonely, chubby girl in Melbourne and an isolated New Yorker struggling with Asperger’s Syndrome, offers some of the more compelling and richly complex characters found in contemporary film today. As directed by Academy-Award-winning director Adam Elliot (Harvie Krumpet) and voiced by a cast including Philip Seymour Hoffman, Toni Collette and Eric Bana, the “desire for acceptance and love amid the pain of existence” has never found so singular a voice. ANIMATION; 92 minutes. Directed by Adam Eliot; 2009.

VIEW TRAILER


OC87: THE OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE, MAJOR DEPRESSION, BIPOLAR DISORDER, ASPERGER’S MOVIE
Special guests: Co-directors/producers Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten, Scott Johnston

OC87 movieFilmmaker Bud Clayman's documentary is a personal story with universal relevance - a wildly original documentary of pain and vulnerability, empowerment and his quest for belonging. Throughout his youth, Bud's future was filmmaking. After college he headed to Hollywood in search of a break. Instead he had a breakdown. When distress and isolation set in, the diagnosis followed. Thirty years later, in an effort to share his story, he's making the movie of his life. Through video diaries, Bud reveals eye-opening glimpses of his inner world. “I want people to understand,” says Clayman, “there is more to mental illness than pain and problems. My recovery is about acceptance and getting on with life.” DOCUMENTARY; 100 minutes. Directed by Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten & Scott Johnston; 2010.

VIEW TRAILER


PLANET ASPERGER + SELECTED SHORTS

Planet AspergerMichelle (16), Regina (31), Marcos (12) and Victor (22), all young people with Asperger's, have always felt that they were different and didn’t understand the rules of the “normal planet." Despite an alternative way of seeing the world, they feel compelled to fit in and be understood. Through them we share moments of incomprehension, love, loss, professional rejection, school bullying... and, ultimately, acceptance and adaptation. DOCUMENTARY; 85 minutes, in Spanish with English subtitles. Directed by Maria Barrosa & Ricardo de Gracia; 2014.

Awards/distinctions include:

  • Best Documentary nomination, Valladolid International Film Festival
  • Official Selection, International Documentary Film Festival, Amsterdam

VIEW MOVIE TRAILER

SHORTS:

  • RosloffBY Benjamin Rosloff: Ben, an extraordinary young filmmaker with Autism, based in NYC, will screen and discuss his two shorts -
    1) Benjamin's Story - shot at the United Nations with an interview with UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-Moon. The video – produced for the the 2016 World Autism Awareness Day reflects on Benjamin’s future and how it relates to major global issues;
    2) Can I Call You? a touching short about approaching girls for a date
  • BY Adrian Exposito: Adrian, a local and prolific young adult filmmaker with Autism, will show a short trailer from his upcoming new feature Diffability Hollywood - about how Individuals with disabilities make up 20% of the population, but their representation on TV and in movies is less than 1%. Features many celebrities, actors and advocates with disabilities including: Johnny Knoxville, Edward Barbanell, Robert David Hall, Danny Woodburn, Jamie Brewer, Lauren Potter, Chris Burke, Katherine Crawford, Rachel Simon and Joey Travolta.

VIEW DIFFABILITY HOLLYWOOD MOVIE TRAILER

adrian1 adrian2


SWIM TEAM
Special Guests: Flmmaker, Lara Stolman; Dr. Lori Jeanne Peloquin; Jen Hackett, Executive Director, Water Safety & Adaptive Swim Instructor, Camp Puzzle Peace

This exciting film chronicles the rise of a competitive swim team made up of children and teens on the autism spectrum, focusing particularly on three of the team's star athletes - boys on the cusp of adulthood, facing a potential future of exclusion and dependence. As the pressure mounts and the team vies for state and national Special Olympics championships, SWIM TEAM captures a moving quest for inclusion, independence and a life filled with hope. DOCUMENTARY, 90 minutes. Directed by Lara Stolman, Woodland Park Productions, 2016.

"Eye-opening, thoughtful, inspiring..."
- Sheri Linden, Hollywood Reporter

“An exceptional documentary on what it means to come together for a common goal under extraordinary circumstances…”
- Anne-Katrin Titze, Eye For Film

"A rare window into the essence of … the exhilarating healing powers of love and devotion.”
- Glenn Fennelly, MD, MPH, Professor and Chairman, Department of Pediatrics, Rutgers New Jersey Medical School

“Plunges viewers into the world of young men on the autism spectrum as they compete against other teams and race against the clock in their transition towards adulthood. A touching and real look at what young adults on the autism spectrum and their families are capable of and the challenges they face.”
- Suzanne Buchanan, Psy. D. BCBA-D, Executive Director, Autism NJ

Awards:

  • Best Sports Documentary, Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival
  • Audience Award, Monmouth Film Festival

VIEW SWIM TEAM MOVIE TRAILER




TEMPLE GRANDIN
Special guest: Local basketball phenomenon J-Mac

Temple GrandinNominated for 15 Emmys and the winner of seven, including Outstanding Lead Actress and Outstanding Television Movie, this remarkable HBO biopic focuses on the early years of Temple Grandin, now a PhD lecturer and perhaps the most renowned example of a person living successfully with Autism. Featuring a Golden Globe-winning performance by Claire Danes, the film delicately weaves a story of Temple as a bright, complicated girl whose Harvard-educated mother (Julia Ormond) and caring teacher (David Straitharn) encourage her to blossom under the mantra “different not less.” Watching her triumph amidst the adversity and prejudice of the outside world is a revelation, and a fitting way to close out a film series dedicated to hope. NARRATIVE; 107 minutes. Directed by Mick Jackson; 2010.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE



BIPOLAR DISORDER

DIAGNOSIS BIPOLAR: FIVE FAMILIES SEARCH FOR ANSWERS
Special guest: Co-director/producer Kate Davis

Diagnosis Bipolar photoDiagnosing children with bipolar mood disorder has become a widespread but increasingly controversial practice in the last several years. As this unsparing and critically-acclaimed documentary shows, doctors and families are often left to sort through untested medications with debilitating side effects and unknown long-term results. The honest and intimate observations on screen – from parents as well as national experts – underscore remarkable strength in the face of wrenching medical decisions and social isolation, revealing a deep compassion for the charming and complex children at the center of a heartbreaking struggle. DOCUMENTARY; 49 minutes. Directed by Kate Davis & David Heilbroner; 2009.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE


GOD KNOWS WHERE I AM
Documentary, 2016, 97 minutes.
Directed by Jedd & Todd Wider

After being released from a psychological medical facility, Linda Bishop walked down the road, discovered an abandoned farmhouse and moved in. A prisoner of her own mind, she survived for four months on apples and rainwater, during one of the coldest winters on record. When her body was found the next spring, beside her was a diary documenting her journey of starvation and loss of sanity, but told with poignance, beauty, humor, and spirituality.

Both a study of systemic failure and also a testament to the artistic and independent spirit of Linda Bishop, the film poses many provocative questions including the issue of civil liberties of the mentally ill—if one’s mind is not free, can one truly exercise free will?

Special gusts: JOAN BISHOP (Linda's sister), Kristin Dawson-Henderson, Attorney, Mental Hygiene Legal Services, Lynne Fisher, Education Program Administrator, NAMI-Rochester, Larry Guttmacher, M.D., Clinical Director, Rochester Psychiatric Center, Elizabeth Kingsley Curran, LMSW, Master CASAC, Admissions Director, East House

Awards:

  • Winner, Special Jury Prize, HOT DOCS
  • Best of Fest, IDFA
  • Special Jury Award, Innovative Treatment of a Social Issue in a Documentary Feature, Napa Valley Film Festival
  • Best Documentary Feature
    - American Documentary Film Festival
    - New Hampshire Film Festival
    - Maryland International Film Festival
  • Nominated, Best Documentary Feature
    - Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
    - Cleveland International Film Festival
    - Big Sky Documentary Film Festival

Reviews:

New York Times Critic’s Pick

A devastating commentary on American society’s approach to mental health. Los Angeles Times

Remarkably moving. The Washington Post

Beautiful, evocative, and ultimately heartbreaking. The Atlantic

Haunting and uncommonly artful. The Hollywood Reporter

A powerful film… artfully rendered with compassion and intelligence. These types of cerebral arguments should fall to the wayside when a person’s life is at stake. Linda Bishop did not need to suffer, nor die. Her death was a failure in care produced by blind obedience to spurious logic and to professional diffidence. Lloyd I. Sederer, M.D., Medical Director of NYS Office of Mental Health, Psychology Today

An extraordinary film that portrays brilliantly the inner reality of an intelligent and creative human being suffering from a serious and life threatening mental illness. The viewer will come away with not only appreciation of this amazing person but also the dysfunction in our system of mental health that allows for preventable tragedy after tragedy. We must do better. Steven S. Sharfstein, M.D., President Emeritus, Sheppard Pratt Health System, Former President of the American Psychiatric Association

VIEW GOD KNOW WHERE I AM MOVIE TRAILER




Living With ItLIVING WITH IT
Special guest: Playwright/actor Frank LaFrazia Performed live.

Frank LaFrazia’s acclaimed one-man play details his experiences as a teenager living with his mother who suffered from Bipolar disorder. In his performance, LaFrazia revisits his life in Rochester between the ages of 13 and 18, during which time he was his mother's caregiver, negotiating an obstacle course of hospital admissions, medical problems and his own coming of age.


MIND/GAME: THE UNQUIET JOURNEY OF CHAMIQUE HOLDSCLAW
Special guest: Filmmaker Rick Goldsmith

mind game-sparksFrom the rough-edged courts of New York City and recruited by Coach Pat Summitt for the University of Tennessee’s Lady Vols, Chamique Holdsclaw was hailed as the “female Michael Jordan,” impressing crowds with her artistry, athleticism and drive. A 3-time NCAA champ and Number One draft pick in the WNBA, Holdsclaw seemed destined for a spectacular professional career—until her long-suppressed battle with mental illness emerged to derail her career and threaten her life.

Mind/Game intimately chronicles Holdsclaw’s athletic accomplishments and personal setbacks, and her decision, despite public stigma, to become an outspoken mental health advocate. Still, she would face dramatic, unexpected challenges to her own recovery. The film, narrated by Glenn Close, tells a powerful story of courage, struggle, and redemption. DOCUMENTARY; 56 minutes. Directed by Rick Goldsmith; 2015.

“Sheds light on this likable athlete and provides a glimpse into the insular world of sports, where coming out — of any sort — remains a heavy burden.”
The San Francisco Chronicle

“Terrific…a remarkable and important film.”
Dr. Kay Redfield Jamison, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine

Awards:

  • Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism Fellowship, The Carter Center
  • VOICE Award, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Svcs. Admin. (SAMHSA), 2015
  • “Tennessee First” Audience Award, Nashville Film Festival, 2015
  • AUDIENCE and JURY Awards: Best Documentary, Knoxville Film Festival, 2015
  • AUDIENCE Award: Best Documentary, Out on Film (Atlanta) Festival, 2015
  • AUDIENCE Award: Best Documentary, Gold Coast International Film Festival (Great Neck, NY), 2015
  • AUDIENCE Award & JURY PRIZE nomination, Nashville Film Festival
  • AUDIENCE Award: Best Documentary, DC Independent Film Festival, 2016

OFFICIAL SITE

 

 




OC87: THE OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE, MAJOR DEPRESSION, BIPOLAR DISORDER, ASPERGER’S MOVIE
Special guests: Co-directors/producers Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten, Scott Johnston

OC87 photoFilmmaker Bud Clayman's documentary is a personal story with universal relevance - a wildly original documentary of pain and vulnerability, empowerment and his quest for belonging. Throughout his youth, Bud's future was filmmaking. After college he headed to Hollywood in search of a break. Instead he had a breakdown. When distress and isolation set in, the diagnosis followed. Thirty years later, in an effort to share his story, he's making the movie of his life. Through video diaries, Bud reveals eye-opening glimpses of his inner world. “I want people to understand,” says Clayman, “there is more to mental illness than pain and problems. My recovery is about acceptance and getting on with life.” DOCUMENTARY; 100 minutes. Directed by Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten & Scott Johnston; 2010.

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OF TWO MINDS
Special guest: Film subject Carlton Davis

Of Two MindsOf Two Minds explores the extraordinary lives, struggles and successes of three unique and compelling people – artist/architect Carlton Davis, journalist Liz Sikol and stylist Cheri Keating – living with Bipolar Disorder in America today. Through a combination of intimate verité and revealing interviews, the viewer experiences what it feels like to be Bipolar – from exquisite feelings of grandiosity and sensuality to the depths of despair and depression. A journey from the painful to the painfully funny, Of Two Minds puts a human face on the illness, opening an engaging, harrowing and perception-changing view on those all around us who live in Bipolar's shadows...our sisters and brothers, parents and friends, and ourselves. DOCUMENTARY; 89 minutes. Directed by Douglas Blush & Lisa J. Klein; 2012.

“Intelligent...compassionate”
Variety

Awards include:

  • Los Angeles Grand Jury Award, Best Documentary, United Film Festival

VIEW TRAILER


PACK UP YOUR SORROWS
Special guest: Film subject/Co-Producer Meg Hutchinson

Pack Up Your SorrowsNEW YORK STATE PREMIERE! On a cross-country journey to interview such leading voices in the mental health field as Kay Redfield Jamison and Scott Stossel (as well as explore alternative therapies with such luminaries as Lama Migmar Tseten, Harvard Buddhist Chaplain & Director of The Sakya Institute for Buddhist Studies), singer/songwriter Meg Hutchinson weaves together a story of Bipolar Disorder, hope and transformation. With Hutchinson's music and stunning images of the natural world guiding the way, the film is a unique and moving meditation on achieving wellness. DOCUMENTARY; 96 minutes. Directed by Rob Stegman & Todd Kwait; 2015.

OFFICIAL SITE & TRAILER

SUICIDE: THE RIPPLE EFFECT
Documentary, 93 minutes, 2018.

ANTHONY BOURDAIN. KATE SPADE. These recent tragedies have brought to the forefront the startling fact that suicide is a global epidemic, and is killing over 800,000 people/year.

Kevin Hines was lucky not to be one of these statistics. At age 19, he attempted to take his life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. After a miraculous survival, he became a renowned mental health advocate, motivational speaker and author who travels the world, spreading a message of hope, recovery and wellness, focusing on the devastating effects of suicide and the tremendous positive ripple effects of inspiration and hope that are helping millions heal and stay alive.

Special Guests: Margi Taber, CASAC II, Assistant Program Director for Prevention, MHFA/YMHFA Coordinator, Delphi Rise, Eric Caine, M.D., Director, Injury Control Research Center for Suicide Prevention (ICRC-S), Dept. of Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center, Kristina Mossgraber, Survivor, Special Events Coordinator, NAMI Rochester; Ending the Silence educator; In Our Own Voice presenter, Chacku Mathai, CPRP; CEO, Mental Health Association, Co-Chair, Monroe County Partners for Suicide Prevention Coalition, Bill Perun, Survivor, past president of NAMI Rochester, vice president of NAMI NYS, member of the NAMI National Peer Council, and certified Peer Specialist for the New York Office of Mental Health

Co-sponsored by:

Reviews:

This film will save lives. National Suicide Prevention Hotline

A film about hope. Huffington Post

This is gut-level real. American Association of Suicidology

VIEW SUICIDE: THE RIPPLE EFFECT MOVIE TRAILER

 



CHILDREN & DIAGNOSIS

DIAGNOSIS BIPOLAR: FIVE FAMILIES SEARCH FOR ANSWERS
Special guest: Co-director/producer Kate Davis

Diagnosis BipolarDiagnosing children with bipolar mood disorder has become a widespread but increasingly controversial practice in the last several years. As this unsparing and critically-acclaimed documentary shows, doctors and families are often left to sort through untested medications with debilitating side effects and unknown long-term results. The honest and intimate observations on screen – from parents as well as national experts -- underscore remarkable strength in the face of wrenching medical decisions and social isolation, revealing a deep compassion for the charming and complex children at the center of a heartbreaking struggle. DOCUMENTARY; 49 minutes. Directed by Kate Davis & David Heilbroner; 2009.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE



DEPRESSION

ALMOST SUNRISE

Special Guests: Matthew McGee, US Coast Guard, Retired; Veterans OutreachCenter (VOC) Dave Oliver, E9 US Army National Guard; Buddy to Buddy, VOC Nicholas Stefovic, USMC vet

The moving story of two Iraq veterans, Tom Voss and Anthony Anderson, both tormented by depression for years after they returned home and felt pushed to the edge of suicide. Embarking on an extraordinary journey – a 2,700 mile walk across the country from Wisconsin to California – the two men not only raise awareness of the plight of veterans, but reflect on their own haunting experiences and ultimately, fight to save themselves. DOCUMENTARY, 98 minutes. Directed by Michael Collins, 2016.

“This moving documentary has a compelling urgency.”
- Hollywood Reporter

“This film will save lives!”
- Brian Kinsella, Founder, Stop Soldier Suicide

Awards:

  • Moving Mountains Award, Telluride Mountainfilm Festival, 2016

VIEW ALMOST SUNRISE MOVIE TRAILER

 

DEPRESSION: THE MUSICAL

A LIVE STAGE READING
Performed by Ralph Meranto
Written by Herb Katz and Paula Marchese
Directed by Herb Katz
Music & Lyrics by Patricia Chadwick
Musical Director/Accompanist: Julie Covach

depression the musical

At times poignant, heartbreaking, endearing and hillarious, this true story chronicles the talented Herb Katz’s lifelong struggle with Depression, including time spent in the R Wing of Strong Hospital, where he implausibly meets a beautiful woman visitor who later becomes his wife. Told through stories, jokes and song, this is a tale that will leave you laughing, crying, and with a better understanding of what makes us all human.

Special Guests: Herb Katz, Ralph Meranto, Christine Fitzstevens, MCSW-R
HERB KATZ is one of the Co-Founders of the Reel Mind Theater & Film Series, and was recognized by NAMI-Rochester Award for his contribution to mental health advocacy. For close to 30 years, he was the Arts Director of the Jewish Community Center (JCC) of Greater Rochester, both performing and managing the theatre and art gallery spaces. He is the recipient of the Arts & Cultural Council Award for Outstanding Programming at the JCC, and the Geva Theatre Legacy Award, given to an individual who has done the most to further theatre in Rochester.  

RALPH MERANTO is the CenterStage Theatre Artistic Director at the Louis S. Wolk JCC. He is known as an innovative theatre director and developer of new plays. Recent projects include “Survivors” by Wendy Kout, based on the testimony of 10 Rochester-area holocaust survivors, Jason Odell Williams’ “Church & State,” which premiered at the JCC before running Off-Broadway, and the popular “Hit Makers/Hit Factory” series he created.

 

 


HEAVEN IS A TRAFFIC JAM ON THE 405

Documentary, 2017, 40 minutes
Directed by Frank Stiefel.

Brilliant artist Mindy Alper is represented by one of LA’s top galleries, and her body of raw, emotional work reveals a lifetime of extreme depression and anxiety. Through electroshock therapy, multiple commitments to mental institutions and a 10-year period without speech, her only consistent means of communicating has been to channel her hyper self-awareness into drawings and sculpture of powerful psychological clarity.

Through an examination of her work, interviews, reenactments,
the building of an eight and a half foot papier-mâché bust of her beloved psychiatrist, we learn how she has emerged from a life of darkness and isolation to a life that includes love, trust and laughter.

Awards:

  • 2018 ACADEMY AWARD! Best Documentary, Short Subject
  • Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
    - Jury Award
    - Audience Award
  • Austin Film Festival
    - Jury Award
    - Audience Award
    - Hiscox Courage Award
  • International Documentary Film Festival: Artistic Inspiration Award
    and many more

Reviews:

Powerfully confronts the reality of living with mental illness and negotiating its pain every day, and poignantly realizes art’s ability to express unintelligible experiences through Stiefel’s eccentric approach that appropriately finds a visual equivalent to Alper’s language… What a remarkable work of art. POV Magazine

A playful and beautiful treatise on the power of art as therapy and the uniquely human ability to transform pain into expression. Director Frank Stiefel deserves recognition for never ghettoizing Mindy or her work as “outsider” art, as others have and would… Film Inquiry

VIEW HEAVEN IS A TRAFFIC JAM MOVIE TRAILER

Preceded by:
Awakening - Art Exhibit
Special juried art exhibit curated by the Mental Health Association’s Creative Wellness Opportunities; Executive Director: Veronica Weider; Art Consultant: Leslie Werlin.

 

IN A DREAM

In a Dream photoOver the past four decades, artist Isaiah Zagar has covered more than 50,000 square feet of Philadelphia with stunning mosaic murals. In a Dream is an award-winning documentary chronicling his remarkable work, his mental health struggles as well as his often tumultuous relationship with his family. DOCUMENTARY; 80 minutes. Directed by Jeremiah Zagar; 2008.

Awards include:

  • Emmy Nomination
  • Audience Award, SXSW Film Festival
  • Jury Prize, Woodstock Film Festival
  • Charles E. Guggenheim Emerging Artist Award, Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
  • Artistic Vision Award, Big Sky Film Festival

VIEW TRAILER

 

IT’S KIND OF A FUNNY STORY
Special guest via Skype: Author Ned Vizzini

It's Kind of a Funny StoryWhen 15-year-old Craig Gilner is accepted by a prestigious Manhattan high school, the pressure becomes overwhelming, and he finds himself battling depression. When partying and drugs fail to alleviate his pain, he finds himself on a bridge. Realizing his suicidal ideations are turning dangerously real, he checks himself into a hospital where the only space available is in the adult psychiatric wing. There he receives the help he needs, discovers his hidden artistic talents and makes moving connections with the charming and troubled patients who share his floor. NARRATIVE; 101 minutes. Directed by Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck; starring Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, Viola Davis, Lauren Graham; 2010.

VIEW TRAILER


OC87: THE OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE, MAJOR DEPRESSION, BIPOLAR DISORDER, ASPERGER’S MOVIE
Special guests: Co-directors/producers Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten, Scott Johnston

OC87Filmmaker Bud Clayman's documentary is a personal story with universal relevance - a wildly original documentary of pain and vulnerability, empowerment and his quest for belonging. Throughout his youth, Bud's future was filmmaking. After college he headed to Hollywood in search of a break. Instead he had a breakdown. When distress and isolation set in, the diagnosis followed. Thirty years later, in an effort to share his story, he's making the movie of his life. Through video diaries, Bud reveals eye-opening glimpses of his inner world. “I want people to understand,” says Clayman, “there is more to mental illness than pain and problems. My recovery is about acceptance and getting on with life.” DOCUMENTARY; 100 minutes. Directed by Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten & Scott Johnston; 2010.

VIEW TRAILER


ORDINARY PEOPLE
Special guest: Author/suicide survivor Susan Rose Blauner

Ordinary PeopleIn celebration of this groundbreaking title’s 30th Anniversary, Reel Mind is proud to present this special screening from Paramount Pictures. As stunning today as when it first debuted, the film won Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Best Director (Robert Redford) as well as Best Supporting Actor for relative newcomer Timothy Hutton for his role as Conrad, a suicidal high schooler trying to rebuild his life after his golden-haired brother’s accidental death. Adding to the devastation in this spare but pitch-perfect film is a mother as chilled as her clinking ice, a hapless, lost father, and the saving grace of a psychiatrist, whose on-screen sessions helped forever change moviegoers’ perceptions of what therapy could do. NARRATIVE; 124 minutes. Directed by Robert Redford; starring Donald Sutherland, Timothy Hutton, Mary Tyler Moore, Judd Hirsch, Elizabeth McGovern; 1980.

VIEW TRAILER

Susan Rose Blauner is an award-winning speaker and workshop presenter, and the author of How I Stayed Alive When My Brain WasTrying to Kill Me: One Person’s Guide to Suicide Prevention. Diagnosed with PTSD, borderline personality disorder and depression, her history includes chronic bullying, sexual abuse, and the death of her mother when she was 14. She has made three suicide gestures, and has been locked in a psychiatric ward four times. Her book is used by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, and she has made numerous television appearances on such programs as CNN and Good Morning America.


ROCKS IN MY POCKETS
Special guest: Animator Signe Baumane

Rocks in My PocketsSigne Baumane’s brilliantly animated exploration of her family’s multi-generational struggle with depression and suicide is a story of "mystery and redemption... packed with visual metaphors, surreal images and a twisted sense of humor. It is a tale full of art, women, strange daring stories, Latvian accents, history, nature, adventure and more." Don't miss this exceptional evening with the delightful Baumane, who is known to throw hand painted paper mache rocks into the audience as gifts. ANIMATION; 88 minutes. Directed and animated by Signe Baumane; 2014.

“Told with remorseless psychological intelligence, wicked irony and an acerbic sense of humor”
The New York Times

“Boasting a narrative of extraordinary complexity and density, stuffed with irony, humor and tales-within-tales... imaginative... fascinating and very personal”
Variety

"Signe Baumane examines her family members’ history with mental illness (as well as her own struggles) with humor, delicacy and eye-catching animation techniques... Her commitment and talent is overwhelming.”
USA Today

Awards/nominations include:

  • Karlovy Vary International Film Festival: Winner, International Film Critics Award

OFFICIAL SITE



DOWN’S SYNDROME

PRAYING WITH LIOR
Special guest: Film subject Lior Liebling & Director Ilana Trachtman via Skype

Praying for LiorAn engrossing, wrenching and tender documentary film, PRAYING WITH LIOR introduces Lior Liebling, also called "the little rebbe." Lior has Down syndrome, and has spent his entire life praying with utter abandon. Is he a "spiritual genius" as many around him say? Or simply the vessel that contains everyone's unfulfilled wishes and expectations? Lior - whose name means "my light" - lost his mother at age six, and her words and spirit hover over the film. While everyone agrees Lior is closer to God, he's also a burden, a best friend, an inspiration, and an embarrassment, depending on which family member is speaking. As Lior approaches Bar Mitzvah, the Jewish coming-of-age ceremony different characters provides a window into life spent "praying with Lior." The movie poses difficult questions such as what is "disability" and who really talks to God? Told with intimacy and humor, PRAYING WITH LIOR is a family story, a triumph story, a grief story, a divinely- inspired story. Winner of multiple Audience Awards at international film festivals. DOCUMENTARY; 87 minutes. Directed by Ilana Trachtman; 2008.

"CRITIC’S PICK! Extraordinary…touching."
NY Times

"Captivating...makes believers of us all.”
LA Times

”A CROWD-PLEASING DELIGHT! Intimate and involving, fascinating and rather extraordinary!”
Variety

VIEW TRAILER



HOARDING

MY MOTHER’S GARDEN
Special guest: Filmmaker Cynthia Lester

My Mother's GardenEugenia Lester’s home can only be entered through a window, as the door (and many of the rooms) have been blocked by the result of years of hoarding. As neighbors and the Board of Health count down the days for the home to be condemned as a public health risk, Eugenia’s children travel back to a home they once fled to help their mother try to start a new and healthier life. DOCUMENTARY; 70 minutes. Directed by Cynthia Lester; 2008.

VIEW TRAILER



MENTAL ILLNESS, Various

CRACKING UP
Special guest: Film subject/educator David Granirer

Cracking UpThe case that laughter is a key ingredient of “the best medicine” is convincingly made in this winning documentary about a group of mental health consumers who take their stand-up comedy routines on the road. Filmmaker Tara Shortt chronicles the group’s unusual journey warts and all, and it is hard to believe that the people we see fumbling at the mike during the initial comedy workshops are the same hipsters we see up on the stage at the end. Most exciting is the self-esteem and ownership that leaps off the screen with every smile-inducing joke -- proof positive that mental illness (too) is deserving of the full range of human emotion…even laughter. DOCUMENTARY; 48 minutes. Directed by Tara Shortt; 2007.

David Granirer is a counselor, comic, speaker, and author of The Happy Neurotic: How Fear and Angst Can Lead To Happiness and Success. He has taught stand-up to recovering drug addicts and cancer patients, and is the founder of Stand Up For Mental Health, a project teaching stand-up comedy to people with mental illness as a way of building confidence and fighting public stigma.

WEBSITE


GOD KNOWS WHERE I AM
Documentary, 2016, 97 minutes.
Directed by Jedd & Todd Wider

After being released from a psychological medical facility, Linda Bishop walked down the road, discovered an abandoned farmhouse and moved in. A prisoner of her own mind, she survived for four months on apples and rainwater, during one of the coldest winters on record. When her body was found the next spring, beside her was a diary documenting her journey of starvation and loss of sanity, but told with poignance, beauty, humor, and spirituality.

Both a study of systemic failure and also a testament to the artistic and independent spirit of Linda Bishop, the film poses many provocative questions including the issue of civil liberties of the mentally ill—if one’s mind is not free, can one truly exercise free will?

Special gusts: JOAN BISHOP (Linda's sister), Kristin Dawson-Henderson, Attorney, Mental Hygiene Legal Services, Lynne Fisher, Education Program Administrator, NAMI-Rochester, Larry Guttmacher, M.D., Clinical Director, Rochester Psychiatric Center, Elizabeth Kingsley Curran, LMSW, Master CASAC, Admissions Director, East House

Awards:

  • Winner, Special Jury Prize, HOT DOCS
  • Best of Fest, IDFA
  • Special Jury Award, Innovative Treatment of a Social Issue in a Documentary Feature, Napa Valley Film Festival
  • Best Documentary Feature
    - American Documentary Film Festival
    - New Hampshire Film Festival
    - Maryland International Film Festival
  • Nominated, Best Documentary Feature
    - Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
    - Cleveland International Film Festival
    - Big Sky Documentary Film Festival

Reviews:

New York Times Critic’s Pick

A devastating commentary on American society’s approach to mental health. Los Angeles Times

Remarkably moving. The Washington Post

Beautiful, evocative, and ultimately heartbreaking. The Atlantic

Haunting and uncommonly artful. The Hollywood Reporter

A powerful film… artfully rendered with compassion and intelligence. These types of cerebral arguments should fall to the wayside when a person’s life is at stake. Linda Bishop did not need to suffer, nor die. Her death was a failure in care produced by blind obedience to spurious logic and to professional diffidence. Lloyd I. Sederer, M.D., Medical Director of NYS Office of Mental Health, Psychology Today

An extraordinary film that portrays brilliantly the inner reality of an intelligent and creative human being suffering from a serious and life threatening mental illness. The viewer will come away with not only appreciation of this amazing person but also the dysfunction in our system of mental health that allows for preventable tragedy after tragedy. We must do better. Steven S. Sharfstein, M.D., President Emeritus, Sheppard Pratt Health System, Former President of the American Psychiatric Association

VIEW GOD KNOW WHERE I AM MOVIE TRAILER



 

Grey GardensGREY GARDENS: THE MUSICAL

Performed live. This special fundraiser for Reel Mind is a hilarious and heartbreaking live performance of the story of Big Edie and Little Bouvier Beale, the eccentric aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis - once bright names on the social register who became East Hampton's most notorious recluses. Book by Doug Wright, music by Scott Frankel, lyrics by Michael Korie; 2006.

WEBSITE


HIDDEN PICTURES
Special guest: Delaney Ruston via Skype

Hidden PicturesFilmmaker Delaney Ruston grew up under the shadow of her dad's illness: Schizophrenia. While reconnecting with him after years of estrangement, as seen in the award-winning film, UNLISTED: A Story of Schizophrenia (REEL MIND, 2011), Ruston became interested in the experiences other families had around the globe. How are people accepted or rejected? What is mental health care like? Given that the World Health Organization (WHO) estimates the 450 million people worldwide have a mental illness, why do we rarely hear their stories? Ruston takes us on her journey to answer these questions, uncovering global mental health in India, South Africa, China France, and the US. What emerges are scenes of profound frustration, moments of true compassion, and haunting insights. DOCUMENTARY; 60 minutes. Directed by Delaney Ruston; 2013.

“A provocative film… Global in its scope, but yet so personal in its delivery.”
Glenn Close, Actress & Co-Founder, Bring Change 2 Mind

“A deeply compelling documentary...”
Joanne Silberner, National Public Radio

OFFICIAL WEBSITE


HOLLYWOOD BEAUTY SALON
Special guests: Film subject: Rachel “Hollywood” Carr & filmmaker Glenn Holsten

Hollywood Beauty Salon portrays life at an intimate beauty parlor inside of the Germantown Recovery Community, a non-profit mental health facility in Northwest Philadelphia, where staff and clients alike are in the process of recovery. By gathering together to get their hair done, share stories, and support one another, they find a way to rebuild their lives. The documentary - which was work-shopped at the Salon over the course of four years - is also part of the recovery process, and the subjects of the film played an active part in shaping their own narratives and determining their unique individual styles. DOCUMENTARY; 88 minutes. Directed by Glenn Holsten; 2016.

hollywood beauty salon

"A truly beautiful film about mental health recovery and hope. It's an uplifting testament to the strength, creativity, and capacity for healing that each of us possesses... a vibrant and touching celebration of the recovery movement. Recovery is possible. Hollywood Beauty Salon is proof."
Arthur C. Evans Jr., Ph.D., Commissioner, Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbilities, City of Philadelphia

VIEW TRAILER

 

OC87 RECOVERY DIARIES: SELECTED SHORT FILMS [Variety]
Documentary, various lengths.

Our friends from the OC87 Recovery Diaries join us once again from Philadelphia to present several new short films that tell dramatic and powerful stories of mental health recovery, aided by the help of art, writing, music and film.

Special Guests: GABE NATHAN, Editor-in-Chief, OC87 Recovery Diaries, Leslie Werlin, Creative Wellness Opportunities, Chacku Mathai, Executive Director, Mental Health Association



 



OCD (OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER)

OC87: THE OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE, MAJOR DEPRESSION, BIPOLAR DISORDER, ASPERGER’S MOVIE
Special guests: Co-directors/producers Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten, Scott Johnston

OC87Filmmaker Bud Clayman's documentary is a personal story with universal relevance - a wildly original documentary of pain and vulnerability, empowerment and his quest for belonging. Throughout his youth, Bud's future was filmmaking. After college he headed to Hollywood in search of a break. Instead he had a breakdown. When distress and isolation set in, the diagnosis followed. Thirty years later, in an effort to share his story, he's making the movie of his life. Through video diaries, Bud reveals eye-opening glimpses of his inner world. “I want people to understand,” says Clayman, “there is more to mental illness than pain and problems. My recovery is about acceptance and getting on with life.” DOCUMENTARY; 100 minutes. Directed by Bud Clayman, Glenn Holsten & Scott Johnston; 2010.

VIEW TRAILER



PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITALIZATION

ECHOES OF THE PAST and SEARCH FOR SANITY
Special guest: Filmmaker Dylan Toombs

Echoes of the Past: Surrounded in community myth, the history of one of Rochester, NY’s most prominent buildings -- the former Rochester State Hospital -- tells the story of dramatically shifting attitudes towards those with mental illness. It spans the mass institutionalization of the first half of the 20th century to the move towards deinstitutionalization which started in the 1960’s. Closed in 1995, the Hospital’s imposing 15 story, 450,000 square foot building has remained empty but standing, towering over a major artery of the city for 50+ years. With rare access to the interior of the now deteriorating building, local filmmaker Dylan Toombs is joined by some of those who lived and worked there, as they tell their stories of how their lives were indelibly changed by this monolith. DOCUMENTARY; 24:45 preview. Directed by Dylan Toombs with assistance from Larry Guttmacher & Bob Riley; 2010.

Search for Sanity, a 1954 television special about advances in the treatment of mental illness, was shot inside New York’s Hudson River State Hospital. Its showing will help set in context a preview of Echo of the Past.

VIEW PREVIEW


GOD KNOWS WHERE I AM
Documentary, 2016, 97 minutes.
Directed by Jedd & Todd Wider

After being released from a psychological medical facility, Linda Bishop walked down the road, discovered an abandoned farmhouse and moved in. A prisoner of her own mind, she survived for four months on apples and rainwater, during one of the coldest winters on record. When her body was found the next spring, beside her was a diary documenting her journey of starvation and loss of sanity, but told with poignance, beauty, humor, and spirituality.

Both a study of systemic failure and also a testament to the artistic and independent spirit of Linda Bishop, the film poses many provocative questions including the issue of civil liberties of the mentally ill—if one’s mind is not free, can one truly exercise free will?

Special gusts: JOAN BISHOP (Linda's sister), Kristin Dawson-Henderson, Attorney, Mental Hygiene Legal Services, Lynne Fisher, Education Program Administrator, NAMI-Rochester, Larry Guttmacher, M.D., Clinical Director, Rochester Psychiatric Center, Elizabeth Kingsley Curran, LMSW, Master CASAC, Admissions Director, East House

Awards:

  • Winner, Special Jury Prize, HOT DOCS
  • Best of Fest, IDFA
  • Special Jury Award, Innovative Treatment of a Social Issue in a Documentary Feature, Napa Valley Film Festival
  • Best Documentary Feature
    - American Documentary Film Festival
    - New Hampshire Film Festival
    - Maryland International Film Festival
  • Nominated, Best Documentary Feature
    - Full Frame Documentary Film Festival
    - Cleveland International Film Festival
    - Big Sky Documentary Film Festival

Reviews:

New York Times Critic’s Pick

A devastating commentary on American society’s approach to mental health. Los Angeles Times

Remarkably moving. The Washington Post

Beautiful, evocative, and ultimately heartbreaking. The Atlantic

Haunting and uncommonly artful. The Hollywood Reporter

A powerful film… artfully rendered with compassion and intelligence. These types of cerebral arguments should fall to the wayside when a person’s life is at stake. Linda Bishop did not need to suffer, nor die. Her death was a failure in care produced by blind obedience to spurious logic and to professional diffidence. Lloyd I. Sederer, M.D., Medical Director of NYS Office of Mental Health, Psychology Today

An extraordinary film that portrays brilliantly the inner reality of an intelligent and creative human being suffering from a serious and life threatening mental illness. The viewer will come away with not only appreciation of this amazing person but also the dysfunction in our system of mental health that allows for preventable tragedy after tragedy. We must do better. Steven S. Sharfstein, M.D., President Emeritus, Sheppard Pratt Health System, Former President of the American Psychiatric Association

VIEW GOD KNOW WHERE I AM MOVIE TRAILER




IT’S KIND OF A FUNNY STORY

Special guest via Skype: Author Ned Vizzini

It's Kind of a Funny StoryStarring Keir Gilchrist, Zach Galifianakis, Emma Roberts, Viola Davis, Lauren Graham. When 15-year-old Craig Gilner is accepted by a prestigious Manhattan high school, the pressure becomes overwhelming, and he finds himself battling depression. When partying and drugs fail to alleviate his pain, he finds himself on a bridge. Realizing his suicidal ideations are turning dangerously real, he checks himself into a hospital where the only space available is in the adult psychiatric wing. There he receives the help he needs, discovers his hidden artistic talents and makes moving connections with the charming and troubled patients who share his floor. NARRATIVE; 101 minutes. Directed by Anna Boden & Ryan Fleck; based on the novel by Ned Vizzini; 2010.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE


ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO’S NEST

One Flew Over the Cuckoos NestStarring Jack Nicholson, Louise Fletcher, Danny DeVito, Brad Dourif, Scatman Crothers. Nominated for 9 Oscars and the winner of five (Best Picture, Director, Screenwriter, Actor & Actress – the first film to win such a sweep in 41 years), Milos Forman’s classic 1975 film, based upon Ken Kesey’s 1962 novel, is a searing indictment of institutional psychiatry of that era as played out with joy and pain between the indelible characters of patient Randall McMurphy and Nurse Ratched. The film is historically important as one of the leading examples of the antipsychiatry movement. Join us to discuss how and if things have changed in the 35+ years since the film was made. NARRATIVE; 133 minutes. Directed by Milos Forman; 1975.

Awards include:

  • 5 Oscars
  • Add’l 30 wins
  • Add’l 13 nominations

VIEW TRAILER




PSYCHIATRIC INCARCERATION

VOICES FROM WITHIN
Special guest: Co-Director Ellie Walton

Voice from WithinAn intimate look into five "not guilty by reason of insanity" residents of a Washington D.C. psychiatric hospital, as each confronts misconceptions and stereotypes about their controversial and stigmatized population, while courageously revealing stories of rehabilitation and recovery through the use of a video diary. DOCUMENTARY; 54 minutes. Directed by Joy Haynes & Ellie Walton; 2014.

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PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder)

ALMOST SUNRISE

Special Guests: Matthew McGee, US Coast Guard, Retired; Veterans OutreachCenter (VOC) Dave Oliver, E9 US Army National Guard; Buddy to Buddy, VOC Nicholas Stefovic, USMC vet

The moving story of two Iraq veterans, Tom Voss and Anthony Anderson, both tormented by depression for years after they returned home and felt pushed to the edge of suicide. Embarking on an extraordinary journey – a 2,700 mile walk across the country from Wisconsin to California – the two men not only raise awareness of the plight of veterans, but reflect on their own haunting experiences and ultimately, fight to save themselves. DOCUMENTARY, 98 minutes. Directed by Michael Collins, 2016.

“This moving documentary has a compelling urgency.”
- Hollywood Reporter

“This film will save lives!”
- Brian Kinsella, Founder, Stop Soldier Suicide

Awards:

  • Moving Mountains Award, Telluride Mountainfilm Festival, 2016

VIEW ALMOST SUNRISE MOVIE TRAILER

 

CRISIS HOTLINE: VETERANS PRESS 1
Special guest: Academy-Award-winning producer Dana Perry

Crisis HotlineSince 2001, more veterans have died by their own hand than in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan -- it is reported that one veteran dies by suicide every 80 minutes, and former service members account for 20% of all suicides in the U.S.

Based in Canandaigua, NY and open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the Veterans Crisis Line receives more than 22,000 calls each month from veterans of all conflicts who are struggling or contemplating suicide due to the psychological wounds of war and the challenges of returning to civilian life.

This 2015 Academy Award-winning short documentary spotlights the work of the hotline responders, who provide immediate intervention and support in the process of saving lives.

Presented as a FREE special screening; donations benefit suicide prevention. DOCUMENTARY; 40 minutes. Directed by Ellen Goosenberg Kent; 2014.

VIEW TRAILER


POSTER GIRL
Special guest: Film subject Robynn Murray

Poster GirlAccompanied by "Imagine," an art exhibit curated by the Mental Health Association’s Creative Wellness Opportunities; Executive Director: Veronica Weider; Art Consultant: Leslie Werlin.

This Academy Award-nominated film follows Robynn Murray, a cheerleader turned machine gunner during the Iraq War, as she returns home to face a different kind of battle, with art her new weapon. DOCUMENTARY; 40 minutes. Directed by Sara Nesson; 2010.

“Intimate; unflinching”
The New York Times

“Packs a bigger wallop than most feature-length films”
The Boston Globe

“A breathtaking look at a hidden war”
The Huffington Post

Awards/distinctions include:

  • Academy Awards: Best Documentary Short, Nominee
  • Emmys: Outstanding Informational Programming - Long Form, Nominee
  • International Documentary Association: Best Short, Winner
  • Official Selection, Telluride Film Festival

OFFICIAL WEBSITE



SCHIZOPHRENIA

Crazy ArtCRAZY ART

This compelling documentary tells the story of three talented artists with schizophrenia as they search for identity, acceptance and recovery through their unique and thought-provoking art. A treat for the art history buff, the film explores how artists like Van Gogh reached brilliant (if terrifying) heights when their psychiatric symptoms were peaking. Very much a study in hope, the film shows how contemporary artists can work not only to channel their psychiatric experiences into transcendent art, but can nourish their mental health in the process. DOCUMENTARY; 58 minutes. Directed by Justin Thomas Rowe; 2009.

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THE DEVIL AND DANIEL JOHNSTON

Daniel Johnston, manic-depressive genius singer/songwriter/artist is revealed in this portrait of madness, creativity and love. DOCUMENTARY; 110 minutes. Directed by Jeff Feuerzeig; 2005.

“Original, engrossing and sometimes heartbreaking.”
BBC

Awards include:

  • Best Director, Sundance Film Festival

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MY NAME IS ALAN AND I PAINT PICTURES

My Name is Alan and I Paint PicturesWhat makes an artist? What drives someone to create a painting, a composition or write a novel? While many academic categories of art exist, not every artist easily fits into prescribed meanings. Alan Russell-Cowan – AKA Alan Streets – is one such artist. Afflicted with Paranoid Schizophrenia, Streets struggles with the desire to be a great painter, while battling delusions and auditory hallucinations. My Name is Alan and I Paint Pictures examines Streets’ life, the role art and painting play in it, and how mental illness intertwines with artistic creation and perception. DOCUMENTARY; 86 minutes. Directed by Johnny Boston; 2007.

“There is no shortage of documentaries about mentally ill artists, but My Name is Alan… finds a fresh way into the subject...”
New York Times

Awards include:

  • Founders’s Choice Award, Best Documentary, New York International Independent Film & Video Festival
  • Best Documentary, Monaco Film Festival
  • Director’s Choice, Best Impact of Music in a Documentary, Bronze Medal, Park City Film Music Festival

MORE INFO


PEOPLE SAY I’M CRAZY
Special guest: Producer Ira Wohl

People Say I'm CrazyHailed by critics and audiences alike, the award-winning People Say I'm Crazy is the only film about schizophrenia directed by someone with schizophrenia. Taking camera in hand, filmmaker and well-known artist John Cadigan leads viewers on a remarkable journey in which all can bear unparalleled witness to the disease's effect on one man and his family. The film is a powerful and ultimately optimistic testament, challenging stereotypes and humanizing an often misunderstood illness. DOCUMENTARY; 84 minutes. Directed by John & Katie Cadigan; 2003.

Producer Ira Wohl won an Academy Award for directing and producing Best Boy, about his intellectually disabled cousin’s struggles to achieve a life independent of his family. Wohl is a practicing clinical social worker and psychotherapist.

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The SolistTHE SOLOIST

A remarkable true story of hope and recovery from severe mental illness. Nathaniel Ayers was a former Julliard student who was homeless in Los Angeles and playing a two-string violin under a bridge near a statue of Beethoven when Steve Lopez, a newspaper reporter, came across him. As Lopez begins to tell Ayers' story in print, the community is moved to donate instruments, and the two men form an unlikely but life-changing relationship. NARRATIVE; 117 minutes. Directed by Joe Wright; starring Jamie Foxx and Robert Downey, Jr.; 2009.

VIEW TRAILER


A SISTER’S CALL
Special guest: Filmmaker and family member Rebecca Schaper

A Sisters CallRebecca Schaper and Kyle Tekiela’s feature documentary explores how and why a loved one can disappear into a 20-year abyss of homelessness.

In 1977, Call Richmond went missing. Twenty years later he showed up on his sister Rebecca’s doorstep, suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. Filmed over 14 years, the film captures Rebecca’s brave journey of “bringing her brother back.” While celebrating his healing, the family is finally forced to reconcile the dark traumas and painful memories of their past. Call becomes the unlikely catalyst in this raw depiction of personal and familial recovery. DOCUMENTARY; 76 minutes. Directed by Kyle Tekiela & Rebecca Schaper; 2012.

“Full of secrets…stays with you long after you leave the theatre.”
Michael Dunaway, PASTE Magazine

Awards include:

  • Reel Frontier Special Jury Award, Arizona Int’l Film Festival
  • Spirit of the Independent Award, Ft. Lauderdale Int’l Film Festival
  • Festival Award, San Diego Film Festival

MORE INFO


UNLISTED: A STORY OF SCHIZOPHRENIA
Special guest via Skype: Director Delaney Ruston

Unlisted

Unlisted is the moving story of one daughter’s journey to reconnect with her long-estranged and paranoid schizophrenic father, after years of shame, frustration and fear. Now a doctor and a mother, Delaney Ruston delicately builds a story of reconciliation by weaving together frank and poignant talks with her father, as well as interviews with the people in his past and present life. Sharing touching and oft-times painful detail about the personal toll of mental illness, the film is a soul-searching examination into the nature of responsibility—of parents and children, of physicians and patients, of society and citizens towards those afflicted with severe mental illness. DOCUMENTARY; 57 minutes. Directed by Delaney Ruston, M.D.; 2010.

Dr. Delaney Ruston provides primary medical care in clinics for underserved patients and is also an award-winning documentary filmmaker.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

UNBROKEN GLASS
Special Guest: Filmmaker - DINESH DAS SABU

Twenty years after the death of his parents, 26-year-old filmmaker Dinesh Sabu begins a journey to finally piece together their story and reconcile his past. Traveling to Illinois, California, New Mexico and India, he learns for the first time about his mother’s schizophrenia and suicide, and how his family, including the siblings who raised him, dealt with this secret in an age and culture where mental illness was often misunderstood, scorned and taboo. DOCUMENTARY, 57 minutes.
Directed by Dinesh Sabu, Kartemquin Films, 2016.

“An intimate, emotionally intricate narrative…a fascinating lookinto how we are caught between influences of our past and present, especially within the life-changing bond of family.”
- Nick Allen, RogerEbert.com

“Starkly and yet tenderly shot, this is a candid and careful examination of this family’s apparently stoic sufferings and ultimate triumph over a tragic childhood. A moving and important film, highly recommended.”
- Debra Davy, lasplash.com

“A beautiful family mosaic of courage, strength, resilience, and hope. You will be changed by experiencing it.”
- Diane Zell, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) - Champaign

“A must see. An eye-opener to all of us in our community.”
- Promilla Kumar, Radio Pani Poori

Awards:

  • Special Mention, Documentary Feature, Austin Asian American Film Festival

VIEW UNBROKEN GLASS MOVIE TRAILER



SUICIDE & SUICIDE PREVENTION

CRISIS HOTLINE: VETERANS PRESS 1
Special guest: Academy-Award-winning producer Dana Perry

Crisis HotlineSince 2001, more veterans have died by their own hand than in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan -- it is reported that one veteran dies by suicide every 80 minutes, and former service members account for 20% of all suicides in the U.S.

Based in Canandaigua, NY and open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the Veterans Crisis Line receives more than 22,000 calls each month from veterans of all conflicts who are struggling or contemplating suicide due to the psychological wounds of war and the challenges of returning to civilian life.

This 2015 Academy Award-winning short documentary spotlights the work of the hotline responders, who provide immediate intervention and support in the process of saving lives.

Presented as a FREE special screening; donations benefit suicide prevention. DOCUMENTARY; 40 minutes. Directed by Ellen Goosenberg Kent; 2014.

VIEW TRAILER


ORDINARY PEOPLE
Special guest: Author/suicide survivor Susan Rose Blauner

Ordinary PeopleIn celebration of this groundbreaking title’s 30th Anniversary, Reel Mind is proud to present this special screening from Paramount Pictures. As stunning today as when it first debuted, the film won Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Screenplay, Best Director (Robert Redford) as well as Best Supporting Actor for relative newcomer Timothy Hutton for his role as Conrad, a suicidal high schooler trying to rebuild his life after his golden-haired brother’s accidental death. Adding to the devastation in this spare but pitch-perfect film is a mother as chilled as her clinking ice, a hapless, lost father, and the saving grace of a psychiatrist, whose on-screen sessions helped forever change moviegoers’ perceptions of what therapy could do. NARRATIVE; 124 minutes. Directed by Robert Redford; starring Donald Sutherland, Timothy Hutton, Mary Tyler Moore, Judd Hirsch, Elizabeth McGovern; 1980.

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Susan Rose Blauner is an award-winning speaker and workshop presenter, and the author of How I Stayed Alive When My Brain WasTrying to Kill Me: One Person’s Guide to Suicide Prevention. Diagnosed with PTSD, borderline personality disorder and depression, her history includes chronic bullying, sexual abuse, and the death of her mother when she was 14. She has made three suicide gestures, and has been locked in a psychiatric ward four times. Her book is used by the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, and she has made numerous television appearances on such programs as CNN and Good Morning America.


ROCKS IN MY POCKETS
Special guest: Animator Signe Baumane

Rocks in My PocketsSigne Baumane’s brilliantly animated exploration of her family’s multi-generational struggle with depression and suicide is a story of "mystery and redemption... packed with visual metaphors, surreal images and a twisted sense of humor. It is a tale full of art, women, strange daring stories, Latvian accents, history, nature, adventure and more." Don't miss this exceptional evening with the delightful Baumane, who is known to throw hand painted paper mache rocks into the audience as gifts. ANIMATION; 88 minutes. Directed and animated by Signe Baumane; 2014.

“Told with remorseless psychological intelligence, wicked irony and an acerbic sense of humor”
The New York Times

“Boasting a narrative of extraordinary complexity and density, stuffed with irony, humor and tales-within-tales... imaginative... fascinating and very personal”
Variety

"Signe Baumane examines her family members’ history with mental illness (as well as her own struggles) with humor, delicacy and eye-catching animation techniques... Her commitment and talent is overwhelming.”
USA Today

Awards/nominations include:

  • Karlovy Vary International Film Festival: Winner, International Film Critics Award

OFFICIAL SITE

 

SUICIDE: THE RIPPLE EFFECT
Documentary, 93 minutes, 2018.

ANTHONY BOURDAIN. KATE SPADE. These recent tragedies have brought to the forefront the startling fact that suicide is a global epidemic, and is killing over 800,000 people/year.

Kevin Hines was lucky not to be one of these statistics. At age 19, he attempted to take his life by jumping off the Golden Gate Bridge. After a miraculous survival, he became a renowned mental health advocate, motivational speaker and author who travels the world, spreading a message of hope, recovery and wellness, focusing on the devastating effects of suicide and the tremendous positive ripple effects of inspiration and hope that are helping millions heal and stay alive.

Special Guests: Margi Taber, CASAC II, Assistant Program Director for Prevention, MHFA/YMHFA Coordinator, Delphi Rise, Eric Caine, M.D., Director, Injury Control Research Center for Suicide Prevention (ICRC-S), Dept. of Psychiatry, University of Rochester Medical Center, Kristina Mossgraber, Survivor, Special Events Coordinator, NAMI Rochester; Ending the Silence educator; In Our Own Voice presenter, Chacku Mathai, CPRP; CEO, Mental Health Association, Co-Chair, Monroe County Partners for Suicide Prevention Coalition, Bill Perun, Survivor, past president of NAMI Rochester, vice president of NAMI NYS, member of the NAMI National Peer Council, and certified Peer Specialist for the New York Office of Mental Health

Co-sponsored by:

Reviews:

This film will save lives. National Suicide Prevention Hotline

A film about hope. Huffington Post

This is gut-level real. American Association of Suicidology

VIEW SUICIDE: THE RIPPLE EFFECT MOVIE TRAILER

 

UNBROKEN GLASS
Special Guest: Filmmaker - DINESH DAS SABU

Twenty years after the death of his parents, 26-year-old filmmaker Dinesh Sabu begins a journey to finally piece together their story and reconcile his past. Traveling to Illinois, California, New Mexico and India, he learns for the first time about his mother’s schizophrenia and suicide, and how his family, including the siblings who raised him, dealt with this secret in an age and culture where mental illness was often misunderstood, scorned and taboo. DOCUMENTARY, 57 minutes.
Directed by Dinesh Sabu, Kartemquin Films, 2016.

“An intimate, emotionally intricate narrative…a fascinating lookinto how we are caught between influences of our past and present, especially within the life-changing bond of family.”
- Nick Allen, RogerEbert.com

“Starkly and yet tenderly shot, this is a candid and careful examination of this family’s apparently stoic sufferings and ultimate triumph over a tragic childhood. A moving and important film, highly recommended.”
- Debra Davy, lasplash.com

“A beautiful family mosaic of courage, strength, resilience, and hope. You will be changed by experiencing it.”
- Diane Zell, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) - Champaign

“A must see. An eye-opener to all of us in our community.”
- Promilla Kumar, Radio Pani Poori

Awards:

  • Special Mention, Documentary Feature, Austin Asian American Film Festival

VIEW UNBROKEN GLASS MOVIE TRAILER

UNLISTED: A STORY OF SCHIZOPHRENIA
Special guest via Skype: Director Delaney Ruston

Unlisted

Unlisted is the moving story of one daughter’s journey to reconnect with her long-estranged and paranoid schizophrenic father, after years of shame, frustration and fear. Now a doctor and a mother, Delaney Ruston delicately builds a story of reconciliation by weaving together frank and poignant talks with her father, as well as interviews with the people in his past and present life. Sharing touching and oft-times painful detail about the personal toll of mental illness, the film is a soul-searching examination into the nature of responsibility—of parents and children, of physicians and patients, of society and citizens towards those afflicted with severe mental illness. DOCUMENTARY; 57 minutes. Directed by Delaney Ruston, M.D.; 2010.

Dr. Delaney Ruston provides primary medical care in clinics for underserved patients and is also an award-winning documentary filmmaker.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE



THEATER, LIVE

DEPRESSION: THE MUSICAL

A LIVE STAGE READING
Performed by Ralph Meranto
Written by Herb Katz and Paula Marchese
Directed by Herb Katz
Music & Lyrics by Patricia Chadwick
Musical Director/Accompanist: Julie Covach

depression the musical

At times poignant, heartbreaking, endearing and hillarious, this true story chronicles the talented Herb Katz’s lifelong struggle with Depression, including time spent in the R Wing of Strong Hospital, where he implausibly meets a beautiful woman visitor who later becomes his wife. Told through stories, jokes and song, this is a tale that will leave you laughing, crying, and with a better understanding of what makes us all human.

Special Guests: Herb Katz, Ralph Meranto, Christine Fitzstevens, MCSW-R
HERB KATZ is one of the Co-Founders of the Reel Mind Theater & Film Series, and was recognized by NAMI-Rochester Award for his contribution to mental health advocacy. For close to 30 years, he was the Arts Director of the Jewish Community Center (JCC) of Greater Rochester, both performing and managing the theatre and art gallery spaces. He is the recipient of the Arts & Cultural Council Award for Outstanding Programming at the JCC, and the Geva Theatre Legacy Award, given to an individual who has done the most to further theatre in Rochester.  

RALPH MERANTO is the CenterStage Theatre Artistic Director at the Louis S. Wolk JCC. He is known as an innovative theatre director and developer of new plays. Recent projects include “Survivors” by Wendy Kout, based on the testimony of 10 Rochester-area holocaust survivors, Jason Odell Williams’ “Church & State,” which premiered at the JCC before running Off-Broadway, and the popular “Hit Makers/Hit Factory” series he created.

 

 

 

Grey GardensGREY GARDENS:
THE MUSICAL

Performed live. This special fundraiser for Reel Mind is a hilarious and heartbreaking live performance of the story of Big Edie and Little Bouvier Beale, the eccentric aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis - once bright names on the social register who became East Hampton's most notorious recluses. Book by Doug Wright, music by Scott Frankel, lyrics by Michael Korie; 2006.

WEBSITE


Living With ItLIVING WITH IT
Special guest: Playwright/actor Frank LaFrazia

Performed live. Frank LaFrazia’s acclaimed one-man play details his experiences as a teenager living with his mother who suffered from Bipolar disorder. In his performance, LaFrazia revisits his life in Rochester between the ages of 13 and 18, during which time he was his mother's caregiver, negotiating an obstacle course of hospital admissions, medical problems and his own coming of age.

 



TOURETTE SYNDROME

DIFFERENT IS THE NEW NORMAL
Special guest: Film subject Ariel Small

Different is the New Normal

This inspiring documentary tracks the trials and triumphs of Ariel Small, a high school student who has struggled with uncontrollable tics caused by Tourette Syndrome. With his permission, Ariel’s mother Robin turned the camera on him to document their emotional journey to overcome the obstacles of Tourette’s in order to raise awareness about the disorder and help others living with the condition. Along the way, Ariel meets American Idol finalist James Durbin, whose own battle with Tourette’s makes him realize that anything is possible. DOCUMENTARY. Directed by John Block & Matt Wechsler; 2011. Narrated by Michael J. Fox.

VIEW WEBSITE



VETERANS' ISSUES

ALMOST SUNRISE

Special Guests: Matthew McGee, US Coast Guard, Retired; Veterans OutreachCenter (VOC) Dave Oliver, E9 US Army National Guard; Buddy to Buddy, VOC Nicholas Stefovic, USMC vet

The moving story of two Iraq veterans, Tom Voss and Anthony Anderson, both tormented by depression for years after they returned home and felt pushed to the edge of suicide. Embarking on an extraordinary journey – a 2,700 mile walk across the country from Wisconsin to California – the two men not only raise awareness of the plight of veterans, but reflect on their own haunting experiences and ultimately, fight to save themselves. DOCUMENTARY, 98 minutes. Directed by Michael Collins, 2016.

“This moving documentary has a compelling urgency.”
- Hollywood Reporter

“This film will save lives!”
- Brian Kinsella, Founder, Stop Soldier Suicide

Awards:

  • Moving Mountains Award, Telluride Mountainfilm Festival, 2016

VIEW ALMOST SUNRISE MOVIE TRAILER


CRISIS HOTLINE: VETERANS PRESS 1
Special guest: Academy-Award-winning producer Dana Perry

Crisis HotlineSince 2001, more veterans have died by their own hand than in combat in Iraq and Afghanistan -- it is reported that one veteran dies by suicide every 80 minutes, and former service members account for 20% of all suicides in the U.S.

Based in Canandaigua, NY and open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, the Veterans Crisis Line receives more than 22,000 calls each month from veterans of all conflicts who are struggling or contemplating suicide due to the psychological wounds of war and the challenges of returning to civilian life.

This 2015 Academy Award-winning short documentary spotlights the work of the hotline responders, who provide immediate intervention and support in the process of saving lives.

Presented as a FREE special screening; donations benefit suicide prevention. DOCUMENTARY; 40 minutes. Directed by Ellen Goosenberg Kent; 2014.

VIEW TRAILER

 

POSTER GIRL
Special guest: Film subject Robynn Murray

Poster GirlAccompanied by "Imagine," an art exhibit curated by the Mental Health Association’s Creative Wellness Opportunities; Executive Director: Veronica Weider; Art Consultant: Leslie Werlin.

This Academy Award-nominated film follows Robynn Murray, a cheerleader turned machine gunner during the Iraq War, as she returns home to face a different kind of battle, with art her new weapon. DOCUMENTARY; 40 minutes. Directed by Sara Nesson; 2010.

“Intimate; unflinching”
The New York Times

“Packs a bigger wallop than most feature-length films”
The Boston Globe

“A breathtaking look at a hidden war”
The Huffington Post

Awards/distinctions include:

  • Academy Awards: Best Documentary Short, Nominee
  • Emmys: Outstanding Informational Programming - Long Form, Nominee
  • International Documentary Association: Best Short, Winner
  • Official Selection, Telluride Film Festival

OFFICIAL WEBSITE

 

 


National Alliance on Mental Illness - Rochester (NAMI)
320 N. Goodman Street, Suite 102
Rochester, NY 14607
For more information, call NAMI: (585) 423-1593