Directors Amanda McBaine and Jesse Moss are expected to attend.
“God has an adventure out there for me,” teenager John Chau writes in his journal. Growing up in the Pacific Northwest with a dedication to survival and adventure stories, Chau’s Christian fundamentalist ideology leads him on a very curious quest. Reading about the Sentinelese, a small tribe of people who live on the remote Andaman Islands and whose territory is off limits to visitors, John develops a plan to bring religion to their community. Featuring readings from John’s journal and animated renderings of some of the events of his life, this even-handed and empathetic documentary also profiles historians and former missionaries who comment on the complexities and pitfalls of missionary work. A poignant letter from John’s father (read by an actor) to the filmmakers comments on the difficulties of raising a child who one disagrees with but seeks to understand. And this seeking nature is the essence of what Moss and McBaine undertake in this dramatic and thoughtful film.
Director and producer Amanda McBaine is a Sundance Award-winning filmmaker who made her feature directing debut with Boys State (2020). Co-directed with Jesse Moss, this prize-winning film was slated to be the Opening Night title of the canceled 2020 SFFILM Festival. As a producer, her films include Ghosts of Attica (2001), Speedo (2004), and The Overnighters (Festival 2014). Along with her husband and creative partner Jesse Moss, she is a partner in Mile End Films, a San Francisco-based production company.
Jesse Moss is an acclaimed documentary filmmaker. His films include Full Battle Rattle (2008), The Overnighters (Festival 2014), The Bandit (Festival 2016 Closing Night), and Boys State (2020). His collaborations with Alex Gibney’s Jigsaw Productions include work on two series for Netflix, the “Payday” episode of Dirty Money (2018-20), and The Family (2019), a five-part series about an influential Christian organization. He frequently works with his wife and co-conspirator Amanda McBaine.
Premiere Bay Area
Country USA, India
Director Amanda McBaine, Jesse Moss
Executive Producer Carolyn Bernstein, Doug Bock Clark
Producer Jesse Moss, Amanda McBaine, Jonathan Chinn, Simon Chinn, Will Cohen
Editor Aaron Wickenden
Cinematographer Thorsten Thielow
Music Danny Bensi, Saunder Jurriaans