Here’s the second in a series of short takes on the five trial cities. Three stills, three quotes and nine stats. Click on any of the photos to go to the Vancouver page of our webdoc.
The still above is from the Here At Home film “Heart of Hell.” As Josh Evans says in his guest post about it, “After prolonged periods without housing, individuals pass a point of no return, becoming so adapted to street life that escape, from their point of view, is unimaginable.”
Filmmaker Lynne Stopkewich was hoping to shoot a portrait of Mr. MadDogg while he was out traplining. That didn’t work out so she ended up making the amazing film, “A Model Person.”
You only have to watch a few Here At Home films to realize that none of the stereotypes about homeless people are true.
When filmmaker Lynne Stopkewich set out to make a documentary with At Home participant Mr. MadDogg, she planned to film him traplining. But on the day of the shoot he was feeling too ill to go outside so they ended up doing something completely different with the film.
But just what is traplining? In the woods, when hunters go traplining, they’re checking their snares for catch. In Vancouver, traplining means something a little different.
A still from Here At Home film, "A Model Person"
Yvonne Robertson’s excellent article posted on Open File today, looks into homelessness in Vancouver and the question of what happens when the At Home study ends in 2013. She focuses on the Bosman Hotel project and Lynne Stopkewich‘s Here At Home film, “A Model Person,” gets a mention.
What’s unique about the Bosman Hotel is it gives participants the chance to form consistent relationships with doctors and police officers. Just having this presence addressing issues such as addiction helps stabilize behaviours, according to Evans. But as the study ends in 2013, the fate of the Bosman Hotel hangs in the balance. If it has to shut down next year, at least 100 housed participants are back on the streets.
Lynne Stopkewich has had a distinguished career in feature films, documentaries and TV. While it’s clear that she’s deeply immersed herself in the issues that surround this project, what has most impressed me about her work is its powerful and distinct visual style. Easy-going and thoughtful, she spoke with me over the phone from her home in Vancouver.