I set out to write a film about grief because I felt that stories about the process of grief as someone who has made a foreign country their home and is therefore away from family and sometimes lacks the support of a community, were few and far between.
In 2008 while I was spending the summer in Italy my father passed away suddenly in Mexico where I grew up and where I was living. The last time I saw him alive was at the airport. Four years later I moved to the UK to train as an actor. I would visit my family once a year and every time I got on a plane I would whisper to myself almost like a prayer, ‘No one is allowed to die this year’.
I’ve been in the UK for ten years now, people have inevitably died and the grief of those deaths has been compounded in a way by the fact that in some cases I did not get a chance to say goodbye, not properly, I didn’t get to hold my loved ones and remember together the person we lost. Going back to Mexico months after a funeral was tainted perhaps by a strong feeling of absence.
There is something different about the experience of grief when you are away from family when you don’t get to take part in the rituals that we’ve created as people to get closure, to come to terms with the reality that we are all here one day and gone forever the next. Something that is and will be true for all of us, and yet is so difficult to get our head around.
I also wanted to explore the fact that even in our digitally connected times physical distance can easily erode family relationships; and the amount of guilt and resentment that can build when someone has left their home country to create a life somewhere else and are just not as present as they wish they were.
In the film, we have two siblings, one who lives in Mexico and one in the UK. They just lost their mother and they are taking her to a place that was very dear to her in the English countryside. Both are battling through their grief and want to disconnect, but they need to connect with each other more than anything.
Together with director Danae Islas de Leon we’ve assembled an amazing team of creatives to make this film and if this story resonates with you, you can follow our journey and support us here:
With many thanks to Ana Torres for this wonderful blog. Please do support their KickStarter Campaign.
Find out more here:
Facebook: Barbarian Collective