UNREST Premiere at Sundance
Unrest (formerly Canary in a Coalmine) has been selected as one of the highly anticipated narrative documentaries to receive a world premiere at The Sundance Film Festival
Director Jennifer Brea was a journalist and academic studying for a PhD at Harvard. Months before her wedding, she became progressively ill, losing the ability to even sit in a wheelchair. When told by her doctor it was “all in her head,” her response was to start filming from her bed, gradually deploying crews globally to document the world inhabited by millions of patients that medicine forgot.
Unrest tells the story of Jen and Omar, newlyweds facing the unexpected, and the four extraordinary M.E. patients that Jen meets throughout her journey, in the United States, UK and Denmark. Together, they explore how to make a life of meaning when everything changes. The film is a feat of disability filmmaking, made with an international team and using innovative technologies to allow the bedbound, disabled director to travel the world and film as if she’s in the room.
Unrest is a story of resilience in the face of life-changing loss, of how we treat people with illnesses we don’t fully understand yet, about how confronting the fragility of life can teach us its value, and ultimately, about the need we all have to connect.
There are several public screening opportunities:
- Friday, Jan. 20 - 9:00 pm - Temple Theatre
- Saturday, Jan. 21 - 12:00 pm - Redstone Cinema 7
- Monday, Jan. 23 - 3:30 pm - Broadway Centre Cinema 3
- Wednesday, Jan. 25 - 3:00 pm - Sundance Mountain Resort Screening
- Thursday, Jan. 26 - 9:00 am - Library Center Theatre
Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.) is a systemic neuroimmune condition characterized by post-exertional malaise (a severe worsening of symptoms after even minimal exertion). It causes dysregulation of both the immune system and the nervous system. The effects of M.E. are devastating enough to leave 25% of patients housebound or bed-bound. In many parts of the world, it is commonly known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.
It is estimated that at least 1,000,000 Americans, 250,000 British people, 100,000 Australians, and 100,000 Canadians have M.E. An estimated 75-85% of them are women and 80-90% of them are undiagnosed.
*Estimates vary depending on the diagnostic criteria used.