Documentary humanizes

Campus gets culture

Human, a documentary that examines the depth, complexity, triumph and tragedy of the human condition, was shown Wednesday by the LMC Office of Student Life. Student associate Tammy Smith and Student Life Adviser John Nguyen organized the showing.

Smith described the documentary as “an inner journey to the heart of the human soul.” This was an apt description as the film paired artistic, sweeping shots of human endeavors, both beautiful and terrible, with emotionally honest interviews with people from a variety of backgrounds about everything from love to spousal abuse to economic disparity.

Nguyen characterized the documentary as a study of “how different people in different countries react to the same question.”

The people answering these questions ranged from a man serving life in prison for the murder of a woman and her son to a survivor of the Hiroshima bombings to a beleaguered textile worker struggling to get by.

By analyzing these vastly different situations, the film strives to find the heart of what makes us human. Each interview, while wildly different, features enough emotional honesty that everyone in the audience can see a part of themselves in every person on screen. The documentary’s interviews were all devoid of context and did not denote the country of origin, economic status, or vocation of the interviewee, allowing them to be viewed more objectively.

Dale Satre, a student at LMC, was moved by the documentary. “It was very much an eye opener,” he stated. “I really liked the portraits of the people, and the small quotations.”

“The idea behind the simplicity was they wanted everyone to be seen equally,” Smith observed. “Regardless of country.”

Nguyen was a big proponent of the effects of the film, stating, “It encourages dialogue.”

“Its cool to have an open mind,” Nguyen stated.

The Office of Student Life, which also puts on the “A Place to Talk” functions, where students can gather in a safe environment and discuss current events, has recently shifted the focus of many of its functions.

“We are currently focusing on social justice and you can expect to see more from the Office of Student Life,” said Nguyen.

The next section of the three-part documentary will be shown September 22 in Room L-109.