For those outside of Canada, click here to watch the full short documentary Frame 394 on YouTube.
Frame 394 follows a young man from Toronto who becomes entangled in one of America’s most high-profile police-involved shootings.
While scouring the Internet one night, Daniel Voshart stumbles upon a viral cell phone video. In North Charleston, South Carolina a chilling scene unfolds. A white police officer, Michael Slager, shoots an unarmed black man, Walter Scott, in the back. The video shows Scott running away, while Slager pulls the trigger eight times. Slager then walks over to the dying man and appears plant a taser beside him.
On an obsessive quest for the truth, Daniel hopes to use his expertise in image stabilization to find evidence in the shaky video that will help indict the police officer.
His first attempt seems to indicate that the officer did, in fact, place the taser beside the victim's body. He uploads the video to Reddit and it instantly goes viral. But when he stabilizes more of the cellphone footage, he spots a frame that could potentially help the man he set out to incriminate. Will Daniel take his discovery further, leave the comfort and safety of his apartment to actually get involved in the case? What are the implications of being seen as helping a man vilified in the court of public opinion?
Set against the larger narrative of the growing Black Lives Matter movement, the film’s micro-narrative profiles Daniel’s moral quandary and follows his fascinating journey to South Carolina where he meets with Slager's defense team and local activists. With surprising access, the film offers a rare glimpse behind the scenes of a justice system that allows this scenario to keep replaying itself over and over again.
Frame 394 questions our ideas of truth and justice in a modern viral media landscape — one that often features surface-level coverage and heavily polarized opinions; a place where ideas — even wrong ones — can spread like wildfire.
For media inquiries, please contact CBC publicist Nicola Makoway at firstname.lastname@example.org.