This is not a film about men versus women. Beyond Men and Masculinity explores how men see themselves, how they relate to the people they say they care about and how the personal impacts the political.
What happens when men are taught to disconnect from their feelings in the name of being strong and independent? What is the link between shame and male violence?
Why do we find it hard to value kindness and compassion in men? And what role do women play in defining what is expected from men and masculinity?
A discussion of these sometimes uncomfortable questions is now more crucial than ever. From the therapy room to the political battlefield, this provocative film offers a clear insight into why we must look beyond traditional definitions of men and masculinity.
To Rent or Buy click Here.
We join Thaddeus and Nanci, a Native / Non Native Montanan couple, in the lead up to their wedding, as they face their biggest challenge yet. Thaddeus wants Nanci to convert to his Cheyenne way of life even if it forces Nanci into a subordinate role.
Both Nanci and Thaddeus were adopted as teenagers by families with different ethnicities: Thaddeus by a white Christian family, and Nanci by the Lakota tribe. It’s no coincidence they have sought shared experience and understanding in one another.
Thaddeus believes in returning to his Cheyenne culture and through running sweats he finds peace from the PTSD he suffers. Nanci wants to please him, to find a balance between life in the modern world and her Native traditions even if that means denying her independence.
Under the strain of trying to co-habit and survive together, we see the cracks in their values showing through. Cracks which reveal not just the trauma they suffered growing up, but the chain of oppression endemic in Montana.
Can violent men change? Call Me Dad is a film that takes its audience to the most delicate and painful place inside a parent’s heart. A place where good intentions and hope are pitted against entrenched and tormenting cycles of violence.
For some of these fathers, their fists are their weapons. For others, words and manipulation are most potent, used as part of a sustained pattern of intimidation, threats, and abuse intended to isolate, diminish and control the people they love. Now these men are seeking change. They have come together to talk, share information, challenge and support each other to be better men, partners and fathers to their children.
The group’s founder and facilitator David Nugent believes that women and children have the right to live their lives free from violence, and that men can change if they have the will and opportunity to do so. He challenges men to take ownership of their abusive and violent behaviours, and shows them that they can make different choices, and in doing so, can stop the cycle of violence.
David draws these men deep into conversation about the underbelly of patriarchal forms of masculinity, and the ways in which sexism can harm and diminish women, and constrict and isolate men.
Together the participants in David’s program are reaching for the courage and knowledge they need to be good partners, and good fathers. These men have taken the brave and difficult decision to confront their behaviours and histories head-on. These Dads are fighting to change the story for the next generation. Can these men re-establish ‘family’?