If you are in need of emotional tonic to lift the spirit, this program is very good medicine. The key descriptor for these two films: joyous. They were both huge audience favourites at the opening of the Travelling World Community Film Festival in Courtenay: each provoking cheers, tears and much laughter. Becoming Bulletproof and Alive Inside also challenge our assumptions about ability and aging and, perhaps most importantly, they illustrate the transformative power of art and human connection.
82 min. | 2014 | Super Films!
FILMMAKER: Michael Barnett
Sunday, March 22 | 1:30 pm | Theatre 5
Joy and persistence triumph over adversity in this award-winning documentary about how four very different people with disabilities from across the United States take on leading roles in an ambitious indie film production camp. Barnett’s entertaining and moving documentary brings us face to face with our own prejudices and misunderstandings.
Becoming Bulletproof is about striving to live fully through artistic endeavour and raises important questions about the exclusion and marginalization of those with disabilities from our wider culture. It demonstrates that disability is not the story of someone else: it is our story, of who we are or may become. This life-affirming film has much to teach us about embracing the great diversity of humanity. A must-see!
BEST DOCUMENTARY, Hollywood Film Festival
AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARD, Heartland Film Festival
78 min. | 2013 | The Film Sales Company
FILMMAKER: Michael Rossato-Bennett
Sunday, March 22 | 3:30 pm | Theatre 5
Alive Inside is a joyous cinematic exploration of music’s capacity to reawaken our souls and uncover the deepest parts of our humanity. Filmmaker Rossato-Bennett chronicles the astonishing experiences of individuals around the U.S. who have been revitalized through the simple experience of listening to music. His camera reveals the uniquely human connection we find in music and how its healing power can triumph where prescription medication falls short.
Social worker Dan Cohen, founder of the nonprofit organization Music & Memory, fights against a broken healthcare system to demonstrate music’s ability to combat memory loss and restore a deep sense of self to those suffering from it. Rossato-Bennett visits family members who have witnessed the miraculous effects of personalized music on their loved ones, and offers illuminating interviews with experts, including renowned neurologist and best-selling author Oliver Sacks and musician Bobby McFerrin.
AUDIENCE AWARD, Sundance