Back Home

Wednesday January 17, 2024 7:00 pm Screening is Cancelled due to Weather

Canada/Cuba2022 Nisha Platzer 90 DCP


“There’s a stark tactility to the images of back home, as well as a haunting, ethereal quality … [Platzer’s film] offers a poignant, personal consideration of family, wellness, and the (im)permanence of all things that walk the earth.”
Pat Mullen, POV Magazine

In 1999, when Nisha Platzer was 11 years old, her older brother Josh died by suicide. Twenty years later, the Vancouver-based artist traces the past using the art of analogue filmmaking in her debut feature documentary, back home. Through contemplative narration and fragmentary film sequences (hand-crafted by processing film using plants, soil, and ashes), Nisha documents her efforts to reconnect with the memory of her deceased brother. After experiencing mysterious pain in her feet, Nisha is advised to seek a particular form of yoga treatment. In one of several synchronicities, the yoga specialist she meets, Swan, is revealed to be the mother of Josh’s childhood friend Sam. Between poetic images captured on 16mm and 8mm, Nisha establishes a deep connection with Swan, Sam, and others who knew Josh well, offering a touching exploration of grief and healing in their various manifestations—physical, emotional, and communal.

Post-screening discussion with Nisha Platzer and Maria Weaver

Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky, series director

“With poetic attention to the smaller details that carry outsized emotional weight, back home navigates the agony of loss with clarity and a stubborn species of hope … [The film] creates a shared space for grief, healing, and true catharsis.” Dorothy Woodend, The Tyee
“[Platzer’s back home] is less a story about family trauma than an attempt to empathize with the pain her brother was in … The result is a deeply moving and ultimately uplifting film about how to live with grief and loss.” Andrea Thompson, Chicago Reader

Co-sponsored by CMHA-BC