Filmmakers use hidden cameras to capture the various suicide attempts at the Golden Gate Bridge - the world's most popular suicide destination. Interviews with the victims' loved ones describe their lives and mental health.
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People suffer largely unnoticed while the rest of the world goes about its business. This is a documentary exploration of the mythic beauty of the Golden Gate Bridge, the most popular suicide destination in the world, and those drawn by its call. Steel and his crew filmed the bridge during daylight hours from two separate locations for all of 2004, recording most of the two dozen deaths in that year (and preventing several others). They also taped interviews with friends, families and witnesses, who recount in sorrowful detail stories of struggles with depression, substance abuse and mental illness. Raises questions about suicide, mental illness and civic responsibility as well as the filmmaker's relationship to his fraught and complicated material.Written by
The filmmakers captured 23 of the 24 known Golden Gate suicides in 2004. See more »
[after witnessing a suicide]
When I talked to the highway patrolman, I asked him "Is this a rare occurrence or does this happen a lot?" And he looked and me and he sort of smiled and he said, "It happens all the time."
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The Bridge is probably the only mature film about suicide I have seen. It is also in a sense a very beautiful film.
The thing that I think ticks people off is that there is no clear message of "don't do it". Most of the interviewed people are at peace with the fact their friends, relatives, sons are dead. They are content of the fact the people who jumped, jumped. And that even if they could have been stopped that time, they would probably have done that some other time.
The controversial footage of people jumping off the bridge simply punctuates the whole point of the film: people jump off the bridge. All the time. People die all the time. It would be naive to think you somehow could or even should stop all that.
In all, this is very recommended viewing for everyone; it's not too graphic, the subject is something you shouldn't avoid and it's very well made. It avoids all pathos often associated with a documentary film that is about a more adult subject.
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