Wednesday, December 18, 2013 – 7:30pm
USA 2012. Director: Kathy Leichter
VANCOUVER PREMIERE! In 1995, after a 20-year struggle with bipolar disorder, Nina Leichter, a 63-year-old mother of two, took her own life by jumping from the 11th-story window of the apartment she shared with her husband. To be closer to her father – and, in some inexplicable way, to her mother as well – Nina’s 28-year-old daughter Kathy moved back home to that apartment, in which she had grown up. Contained within were a lifetime’s worth of Nina’s memories: photographs, diaries, letters, home movies, and most significantly of all, a hidden box of audiotapes.
Sixteen years would pass before Kathy felt ready to listen to the tapes. What they would reveal were frank details of her mother’s sometimes difficult marriage, her sadness over her estrangement from her son, and her difficulties with mental illness. These recordings would ultimately form the backbone of this extraordinarily moving documentary. Driven by the need to understand and forgive Nina, and to explore the repercussions of her mother’s illness and death on her family, Kathy’s journey leads ultimately to a place of acceptance and letting-go. Official Selection, 2013 Hot Docs Festival. Colour, HDCAM. 75 mins.
Post-screening discussion with Dammy Damstrom Albach, who holds Master’s degrees in social work and health care leadership. Dammy managers SAFER (Suicide Attempt Follow-up Education and Research), and has 19 years of previous experience with the organization as a therapist. She co-chaired the B.C. Suicide Prevention, Intervention and Postvention (PIP) Initiative, and is the Past-President of the Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP).
Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky, Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of British Columbia.
Co-sponsored by SAFER (Suicide Attempt Follow-up Education and Research), a service in Vancouver that provides counselling, group work, and emotional support to people who are suicidal, those concerned about them, or those bereaved by a suicide death.