Thursday, June 16, 2022

Breaking the Silence

This intensely personal documentary explores mental illness in an innovative way through the eyes of the filmmaker himself, because writer, director and producer Dara Sanandaji is the subject of his own film. Creating a movie about yourself is a professional and cinematic risk, to be sure, but Sanandaji pulls off the feat through extensive analysis and considerable use of expert testimony. He makes some assertions and observations, too.

Part of the project's success can be attributed to his fine education. Sanandaji earned a BA in Economics from Dartmouth in 2000 and a JD from Chicago-Kent College of Law in 2006 before embarking on a career that ultimately led to filmmaking. At times, the film has an educational look and feel, making it a worthwhile experience for anyone who's interested in the subject of mental health. At the same time, the filmmaker's personal take on his condition is relatable to anyone who has experienced mental health issues firsthand. 

His surprising message? Mental illness is a bad thing, but it's not all bad. You can watch the trailer here: Breaking the Silence Trailer