Film maker Mani Amar has probed South Asian gang life and addictions on Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and now he plans to examine edgy teen issues in small towns like Port Alberni.
Amar’s project will probe alcohol, drugs, sex and teen pregnancy.
He was inspired to do the project after watching the 1995 movie ‘Kids’, which chronicled a day in the life a group of teens in New York City and their unrestrained behavior towards sex and substance abuse.
Similar issues exist in small towns but play out differently, Amar said. “I grew up in Port and can draw on my own personal experiences to put it into context,” he said.
Amar knows he’ll have his critics about the project but says he’d rather be honest than wear blinders. “I’m not trying to glorify the negative side of small town teen life,” Amar said. “I’m being honest about portraying the reality of it.”
Amar excelled in school and straddled the South Asian and white worlds, neither of which he slotted comfortably into.
He sees few people today that he graduated from high school with. He sees one who exhibited vast potential, Amar said. “He lives in Surrey and is addicted to crack.”