Local filmmakers and actors hope a movie debuting soon will teach audiences about the perils of urban gun violence and the role mental health plays in communities that are exposed to violence and poverty.
Filmed mostly in Fishers, “Breathe” is about a young man (Malachi) who sneaks a look at his detective uncle’s (Clem) phone to get a lead on the person who may have killed his older brother (Michael). He then has to decide if he’s going to go after revenge.
The film, which runs about 30 minutes, premiers 7 p.m. July 28 at GQT Hamilton 16 IMAX + GDX, 13825 Norell Road in Noblesville. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at eventbrite.com. There will be a Q&A session after the film. Dija Henry — who wrote, produced, co-directed and acted in the film — said the movie will be on Amazon by the end of July, and anyone who wants to learn more should email her at email@example.com.
Henry said she got the idea from her family’s own grieving process after her brother-in-law was shot and killed in his home a few years ago. She started talking to her husband — who co-directed the film — about his memories, and he told her stories about playing with the dog and enjoying music together.
“I just was really touched by the stories and the bond between the brothers,” said Henry, who plays the mother. “The idea came to me to write the story about dealing with the aftermath of loss.”
Mike Lee, who plays the older brother who dies at 20 years old, said he wants viewers to see they shouldn’t take for granted the time they have with loved ones. With the correlation between poverty and violence, he said, some people can feel like they “don’t have anything to live for.”
Lee, whose two brothers are also in the film, hasn’t been in a real movie like this before. He’s done YouTube videos with his brothers and acted in commercials — he met Henry when he was an extra in a Gatorade commercial for former Pacers player Paul George — but his presence on screen is about to carry more weight.
“When we all come together, things can happen,” Lee said. “It’s about getting everyone on one accord. It’s about having a better mindset in the community.”
William Lee, the oldest Lee brother who plays the uncle, said gun violence is about “decision making,” and people in a position to inflict violence should consider the ripple effect from their actions.
“When you take someone’s life,” he said, “you take them from their family. You take them from every person who has loved them.”
Contact staff writer Tyler Fenwick at 317-762-7853. Follow him on Twitter @Ty_Fenwick.
Catch the premiere of “Breathe,” a film about a young man who must decide if he wants to seek revenge for the shooting death of his brother. There will be a Q&A session after the 30-minute film.
• When: 7 p.m. July 28 (doors open at 6)
• Where: GQT Hamilton 16 IMAX + GDX, 13825 Norell Road in Noblesville
• Cost: $10 at eventbrite.com