Follow the five steps below to get the most out of your UnLonely Film Festival experience!
Step 1: Watch the film.
Native American Paul Antonio’s dreams are dashed at a young age and for decades he struggled through addiction, crime, long imprisonment and the violent deaths of loved ones. His journey mired him in loneliness, isolation and grief but he ultimately developed hope for himself and his people, in part through discovering an affinity for drawing.
About the FIlmmaker
Lindsay Daniels grew up in the shadows of the Wasatch Mountains in Salt Lake City, Utah. She studied Sociology and International Studies, respectively, as well as acquiring a minor in Arabic from the University of Utah. Recent projects include work with the non-profit Effect International and the crew of Stolen Innocence on a documentary on sex trafficking.
Did you set out to explore loneliness in your film and if so, what prompted this focus?
My main focus was to highlight addiction and repetitive behavior, but I think an underlying theme to addiction is loneliness.
Alternately, did you recognize a theme of loneliness as your project developed?
As Paul told me his story, I couldn’t help but think of the loneliness he must have felt going through the many trials he faced throughout his life. From being stabbed to losing his loved ones to serving prison time to being addicted to drugs and alcohol.
Did any of your viewers give you feedback that reflected this aspect of your film?
Yes, several of Insanity’s viewers have mentioned how lonely he must’ve felt going through all of these different trials.
What do you hope UnLonely Film Festival audiences, trying to make sense of loneliness and isolation and navigate a path forward, take from your film?
This film is a story of hope. Even through the greatest storms of life, there is always hope for a brighter day. Paul’s determination to get clean and to live a productive life is something we can all hope and root for.
Step 2: Explore these things after watching the film.
- Do you find that you are occasionally haunted by the plans or goals you did not pursue? Does that haunting ever manifest itself in unhealthy behaviors? How do you manage it?
- Have you ever experienced depression due to a physical impairment of some kind? How did it impact your day to day life? What did you find to be helpful in dealing with it?
- The film showcased some of Paul’s artwork. Do you think his drawings reflect his past life experience or do they represent his newer, more positive outlook? Have you ever turned to making artwork to help you move into a better phase of life?
- Think of a person who you have lost and think of a place/setting where he/she was happiest. Find a photo if you think it may be helpful in terms of remembering specific details, but otherwise, think deeply about your memories of their face in terms of the spatial proportions of their facial features and other marks such as dimples or wrinkles that made their face unique. Sketch lightly with a soft pencil first the head and then each of the features, paying attention to shape and lines. As you are considering their face, also open yourself to other memories and thoughts about them. When you are finished, how do you feel?
- Following a motif within Paul’s artwork, draw a representation of your personal maze. Think of something in your life that you are trying to achieve (the maze’s endpoint) and think of your current situation and what will be involved for you to reach the goal. Now think about that journey when designing the layout of your maze. Should you start from the left and exit the maze to the right? Or start at one spot, journey through the maze and come out of the maze in the very same spot? Or do you start at the bottom and exit at the top? Next, decide on what kind of maze shape makes sense to represent the challenge/journey you are undertaking (A star? A circle? Shape of the goal you are pursuing: a house shape? A diploma shape?). Make it as twisty-
turnyand difficult as you like.
- Think of your own personal scars–those that actually appear on your body or those emotional scars you have experienced as a result of hardships and challenging moments. Every scar has a story—some traumatic, some not. Pick a scar and write the story of its creation. This could be in the form of a poem or a song. Does the scar represent something to you now that is much larger than what it did originally? Or vice versa? How often is the scar present in your day-to-day life?
Our Try This page has even more creative expression inspiration!
Step 3: Join in the conversation about the film.
Your Support Helps!
We’re a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.