I'm not OK: Montreal filmmaker grieves Trump presidency in online video
‘I want to invite people to continue to feel sad and shocked, it’s legitimate,’ says director
A Montreal filmmaker says if the prospect of a Trump presidency drives you to tears, it's OK to let it all out.
Ted Strauss is the director of the short film I'm not OK. The video features several actors breaking down and crying at Lionel-Groulx metro station while surrounded by commuters.
Though his name is never mentioned, Strauss said the film is a way to encourage people to cope with the anxiety and stress some are experiencing in the lead-up to the inauguration of Donald Trump.
His surprise victory in the November election has sparked protest in the U.S., where many fear his hard-line promises on immigration, among other policies. A large women's rights march is scheduled for Saturday in Washington.
"[The film] is a way to tap into people's emotional experience and the sense of grief they may have," said Strauss in an interview Friday with CBC Montreal's Daybreak.
"I want to invite people to continue to feel sad and shocked; it's legitimate."
Strauss said some people may be hiding their feelings since the world has moved on and normalized the idea of having Trump as the 45th President of the United States.
"I was noticing a lot of people, while they felt a similar shock, were returning to a sense of normalcy and that's understandable," he said.
"But I think what's going on today is unusual and we don't know what the consequences will be. The grieving process should continue."
The video was shot in about 20 minutes, said Strauss, adding that he only met the actors just before they began to film. He said the emotion you see is exaggerated, but that is how each actor chose to depict their feelings.
Commuters passing through the station during the shooting were concerned, curious about the performance and very respectful, he said.
Strauss hopes the video provokes a conversation about what comes next.