Audiences will no longer be so quick to judge victims of domestic abuse when Cynthia Hill's documentary feature "Private Violence" reaches them. The film pulls us into the wrenching lives of women with abusive partners and fortunately sheds infinitely new light on the oft-misunderstood issue.
What It's About: Everyday in this country, one in four
women are murdered by an abusive partner. It is a deeply disturbing fact
of American life that the most dangerous place for a woman is in her
own home. "Private Violence" is an intimate look at how this epidemic of
violence plays out in the day-to-day lives of two women: Kit Gruelle, a
domestic violence survivor-turned-advocate, and Deanna Walters, a young
woman who recently escaped a near-death experience at the hands of her
estranged husband. Kit and Deanna are two powerful women at different
stages in the trajectory from victim to survivor.
So What It's Really About: The film is about survival and finding your strength.
Have any films inspired you? I love Terrence Malick. He's just so
damn poetic. That inner voice of his and his storytelling ability . . .
I'm always moved by his films. I also love Lars von Trier. "Breaking the Waves" is one of my favorite films of all time. It's just so raw. That's
the first narrative film I watched that felt almost like I was watching
a documentary. We as humans are not scripted, not so perfect, and it
was astonishing to see a narrative film capture that.
What's next for you? "Next" is already happening. We are in the middle of shooting Season 2 of "A Chef's Life," which is a food/documentary/reality television series on PBS. I feel very lucky to be able to make films and television shows in my home state of North Carolina.
Indiewire invited Sundance Film Festival directors to tell us about their films, including what inspired them, the challenges they faced and what they're doing next. We'll be publishing their responses leading up to the 2014 festival. For profiles, click HERE.