Film tries to answer pressing question for those who remain after Newtown tragedy

By Deb Christian

Nick Stuart, CEO of Odyssey Networks and Executive Producer of NEWTOWN led a post-screening discussion.

Photo by George Conklin

CHICAGO (March 30, 2017) — NEWTOWN, a documentary produced by Odyssey Networks, about the December 2012 killings of 26 people – 20 children and 6 adults – at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., shows the tragedy’s impact on the lives of victims’ families, friends and larger communities. The film was screened for attendees just prior to the opening of RCC’s national convention in Chicago.

Carefully nuanced and distilled from more than 400 hours of interviews occurring over a period of nearly three years and recording the lives of some of those who were most directly touched on that terrible day, the film tries to answer the question, “What remains after all is lost?” and touches the heart of the viewer and explores the sorrow and responses to this individual act of gun violence.

Interviews with parents, siblings, teachers, first responders, medical personnel reveal the trauma to the community and the deep grief, but also a developing sense of purpose to keep their loved ones alive in memory and to stem the easy access to firearms.

Nothing can bring back the children and adults who died that day at the hand of a disturbed individual. The director/producer, Kim Snyder, shares the lives and homes of those who grieve the losses and shows the lasting changes caused by this terrible mass shooting. Those who remain speak plainly about sorrow, rage and difficulty accepting the reality of what happened. Also, they speak of disappointment that nothing has really changed in trying to curb gun violence.

We rarely get to see what happens to a community after a tragedy of this scale is “over” and how the people who must live with the consequences can manage after the reporters and cameras are gone.

Nick Stuart, CEO of Odyssey Networks and Executive Producer of NEWTOWN led a post-screening discussion, assisted by Anne Faust, Director of Impact Campaigns for Odyssey. Odyssey Impact uses compelling documentaries to empower faith-based changemakers to address pressing social issues.

Odyssey Networks is a multi-faith multi-media nonprofit that brings together organizations and individuals around powerful programming that supports people of all faiths and good will as they engage the world to nurture compassion, justice and hope.

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