|Directed by Academy Award-winner Thomas Lennon and shot around the world by 40 filmmaking teams, Sacred immerses the viewer in an exploration of spirituality across cultures and religions. At a time when religious hatreds dominate the headlines, this film explores faith as primary human experience and shows how people turn to ritual and prayer to navigate the milestones and crises of life. Lennon commissioned or sourced footage from top independent filmmakers from more than 25 countries and a wide range of religious traditions, each team contributing a single scene. The film, sweeping in its global reach and yet intensely intimate, unifies these scenes into a single work, told without narration, without experts and, for long stretches, without words at all.
Today, not many people would dispute the importance of religion. But we in media usually look at it socially and politically. Here the goal is to plunge the viewer into a series of private experiences of faith and hopefully the intensity of that encounter shakes up our reactions, triggers something fresh. One of the things that drew me to the project was the idea, “Is it possible to make a sweeping, global film and never get up out of your chair in New York?” Whether it’s successful—that’s for you to judge, but I never did get out of my chair.
Director’s Statement: Thomas Lennon
with Marla Estes & Kay Sandberg
5:15-6:45pm | Elks Club, 255 E. Main St. (2nd St. & Lithia Way) | FREE (no ticket required)
Friday, April 7: City of Joy
Join expert discussion facilitators Marla Estes and Kay Sandberg and special guests for in-depth conversations about how three provocative films affected you and other attendees. Your personal responses to the films’ revelations and possible social action points will be the springboard for discussion. See screenings of the powerful documentaries City of Joy, I Am Another You, and Sacred at AIFF2017, then come to the Elks Club and dive in deeper.
Saturday, April 8: I Am Another You
Sunday, April 9: Sacred
Marla Estes, M.A. is the founder of the School of the Examined Life. She gives workshops using lm watching as a lens for personal growth, and understanding oneself and others.
Kay Sandberg, M.A. is passionate about film as a way to elevate our experience of being human. She has spent her career facilitating conversations that matter including the popular, “OLLI Goes to the AIFF.”