PARK CITY, United States: Gun violence in America has taken center stage at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, where four films focusing on the divisive issue and its impact are making their debut.
The films—including New-town, a harrowing documentary on the aftermath of the 2012 massacre at a school in Connecticut in which 20 children died—are sure to amplify the debate about gun control in the United States where mass shootings have become commonplace.
They are also being shown against the backdrop of a presidential race in which gun violence is a hot-topic issue.
“I wanted this to be an intimate portrait that would break through desensitisation,” Kim Snyder, the director of Newtown, told a panel discussion at the festival. “My main goal was to try and pierce through what I think is dangerously happening where none of us can take in these repeated incidents.”
Another documentary, Under the Gun, explores the battle between those who favor stricter gun control measures and those who portray the debate as a threat to the fundamental right to bear arms in America.
The film, narrated by veteran US journalist Katie Couric and directed by Stephanie Seochtig, begins with an ominous message: Before this film is over, 22 people will be shot, six will die.”
Two other films that deal with gun violence—Speaking is Difficult, a short documentary, and Dark Knight, a movie loosely inspired by the Aurora massacre—are also premiering at the Sundance festival that runs through January 31.