Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go

Wednesday, October 15, 2008 – 7:30 pm Vancouver Premiere!
Post-screening discussion with Dr. Derryck Smith. Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky.
Co-sponsored by Kelty Resource Centre; BC Mental Health and Addiction Services

For the forty children who call it home, the Mulberry Bush School is their last chance. Excluded from school for extreme behaviour, and often having suffered severe emotional trauma, they are given three years at the Oxford boarding school to try to turn their lives around. Acclaimed documentary maker Kim Longinotto (Sisters in Law, Divorce Iranian Style, The Day I Will Never Forget) has once again turned her compassionate lens onto people living in extraordinary circumstances. The fragile young boys at the heart of her film lash out in shockingly extreme ways – hitting, swearing and spitting their way through the misery of their blighted childhoods. Endlessly patient and determined staff members verbally reason with the boys, while often having to restrain them physically. Hold Me Tight, Let Me Go is ultimately a heartbreaking, engrossing study of what happens when families break down. It also pays witness to the tremendous influence that adults hold – for bad and for good – upon growing children. (Carol Nahra, Sheffield Film Festival). Winner of the Special Jury Prize at the International Documentary Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) and the BritDoc Best British Feature Documentary Award. Colour, Beta SP video. 100 mins.

Post-screening discussion with Dr. Derryck Smith. Dr. Smith was Head of Child Psychiatry at Children’s Hospital in Vancouver for 20 years. He is now in private practice, treating patients of all ages with brain injuries or attention deficit disorders, frequently in a medical/legal context. He has been active in medical politics and is a past president of the British Columbia Medical Association.

Co-sponsored by Kelty Resource Centre; BC Mental Health and Addiction Services

Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky, Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of British Columbia.

Frames of Mind is a monthly film event utilizing film and video to promote professional and community education on issues pertaining to mental health and illness.

For more information, see


Film website

Dr. Derryk Smith’s Speaking Notes