2019 Los Angeles RRFF Schedule

Writers In Treatment’s 11th Annual Los Angeles
REEL Recovery Film Festival & Symposium®

October 11-17, 2019
Laemmle NoHo

5240 Lankershim Blvd.
North Hollywood, CA 91601



(Schedule subject to change)


Fri., Oct. 11 @ 5:00pm
The No Matter What Club (2019) Friends, Susan and Maria, find a way to eat, NOT drink and be merry, on Susan’s 28th sober anniversary. Directed by Susan Campanaro. 24 minutes.
IN PERSON: Director, Susan Campanaro 

Fri., Oct. 11 @ 6:00pm
Opening Night Reception
Sponsored by New Directions for Women – at The Federal NoHo (directly across from Laemmle NoHo) 


Fri., Oct. 11 @ 7:45pm
Through The Eyes of Our Children (2018) Introduction by Sue Bright, Executive Director of New Directions for Women. Directed by Kevin Hanlon. 5 minutes. 

Fri., Oct. 11 @ 8:00pm
Rocketman (click for trailer)(2019) the epic musical fantasy about the incredible human story of Elton John’s breakthrough years. Directed by Dexter Fletcher.  121 minutes. 
IN PERSON: Bassist Paul ILLs (played with Juliette Lewis, Christina Aguillera)


Sat., Oct. 12 @ 1:00pm
Roll with Me (click for trailer)(2017) After hitting rock-bottom, a paraplegic (Gabriel Cordell) goes on a 3,100 mile wheelchair trek across America.  Directed by Lisa France. 90 minutesIN PERSON Star Gabriel Cordell and Co-Producer Chris Yanke

Dramatic Shorts

Sat., Oct. 12 @ 3:00pm
For Us(2019) Scott desperately tries to save his wife, Angela from an addiction that threatens to destroy their marriage. Directed by Mona Bennett Johnson. 22 minutes IN PERSON director Mona Bennett, writer/producer Kenya Hendricks, star Nona Yong, and editor Larry Person

Sat., Oct. 12
Addict Named Hal(2019) An unflinching, personal look at a young heroin addict’s journey through addiction, incarceration, and getting clean. Directed by Lane Michael Stanley. 7 minutes. IN PERSON Lane Stanley and Lowell Blank

Sat., Oct. 12
Courage(2019) This ambitious Neo-Noir Western made by CSUN film students explores generational dysfunction, free will and character. 16 minutesIN PERSON director Eric Wann, producer Elizabeth Narayan.

Dramatic Documentaries

Sat., Oct. 12 @ 4:15pm
Live or Failure (click for trailer)(2018) A young journalist is forced to leave her job producing TV news in Washington, D.C. when her liver starts to fail.  Directed by Andrea Gonzales-Paul. 51 minutesIN PERSON Andrea Gonzales-Paul

Sat., Oct. 12
How I Got Sober(2019) A moving documentary about two alcoholics, Warren and Katie that follows their lives from addiction to sobriety.  Directed by Maddie Kitchen. 16 minutesIN PERSON from the UK Maddie Kitchen

Sat., Oct. 12 @ 6:00pm
Liquid Handcuffs: A Documentary to Free Methadone (click for trailer)(2019) Explores the intersection of methadone with race, class, social control, and stigma. Directed by Marilena Marchetti and Helen Redmond. 67 minutesIN PERSON Marilena Marchetti and Helen Redmond

Sat., Oct. 12 @ 7:30pm
The Reason(2019) What is your reason to quit? What is your reason to keep going? This film explores both. Directed by Anton Shtuka. 3 minutesIN PERSON from Ukraine, Anton Shtuka

Sat., Oct. 12 @ 8:00pm
Cracked Up (click for trailer)(2019) Darrell Hammond’s story of trauma, addiction, self injury and misdiagnosis while maintaining a brilliant comedic career on SNL. Directed by Michelle Esrick. 95 minutesIN PERSON Michelle Esrick



Sun., Oct. 13 @ 1:00pm
Triple Feature from Santa Monica College Film School
Hurt(2013) A quiet, misunderstood high school outcast considers an unspeakable crime. Directed by Brandon Chang. 16 minutes. US

Sun., Oct. 13
Valerie(2019) Valerie, a 28-year-old office worker, experiences various transitions in her life while living with schizophrenia.  Directed by Ronja Jansz. 8 minutes. US

Sun., Oct. 13
Hinge (click for trailer)(2019) A lesbian couple’s idyllic life is challenged by their mentally unstable neighbor. Directed by Lisa Ann Mayo. 23 minutes. US IN PERSON  Ronja Jansz, Brandon Chang, producer Salvador Carrasco, Drew Davis and Lisa Ann Mayo

Sun., Oct. 13 @ 2:30pm
Manuel (click for trailer)(2019) The persistence of memory; this film is surreal, moving and like Dali, from Spain. Director Javier Robles Alvarez. 9 minutes. Subtitled

Sun., Oct. 13
My World – US Premiere(2019) Will, a man kidnapped in an old house, develops Stockholm Syndrome. Director Alex Escudero. 15 minutes. Spain

Sun., Oct. 13
Out of Mind (click for trailer)(2019) World PremiereA young Armenian man deals with anxiety/depression AND the stigma of mental illness in his family and community. Directed by Tigran Nersisian. 12 minutesIN PERSON Tigran Nersisian

Sun., Oct. 13
That’s Life(2018) A woman deals with life, depression and her inner demon.  Director Carson Griffin. IN PERSON star Teri Griffin and Carson Griffin  5 minutes. USIN PERSON Director Carson Griffin, Producer Teri Griffin and stars Amber Herfurth & Justin Walters

Sun., Oct. 13
The Sky Is Falling(2019) A young woman faces the reality of hypochondria and the toll it is taking on her life. Directors Scott D. Clark and Frank Souter. 10 minutes. Australia

Sun., Oct. 13
In My Head(2018) When your head is full of insecurities, fear can rule reality.  Director Dean Gild. 10 minutes. Australia

Sun., Oct. 13
Mental Health Awareness in Relationships(2019) Film cleverly uses movie references to explore modern dating. Director Johnny Tackitt. 9 minutes. US

Sun., Oct. 13
Break A Leg(2018) A college student struggles with a leg injury and the strange way that people react to it. Director Carver Diserens. 12 minutes. USIN PERSON Carver Diserens

Sun., Oct. 13 @ 4:30pm
This Is Crazy: Criminalizing Mental Health(2015) Stories of people with mental illness who are in prison instead of getting proper care. 23 minutes

Sun., Oct. 13
Healing Trauma: Beyond Gangs and Prisons (click for trailer)(2018) The inner struggle of former gang members whose abusive childhoods led them to a criminal lifestyle and prison. 23 minutesFeaturing Father Gregory Boyle
IN PERSON Emily Chapa, George Nunez and Inez Salcido of Homeboy Industries

Sun., Oct. 13
Sentencing Reform: Drug Addiction(2018) Shelly and Keith–two hardworking individuals work to keep their sobriety after years in and out of prison. Director Robert Greenwald. 17 minutes. Distributed by Brave New Films.  USFeaturing Dr. Gabor Maté 

Sun., Oct. 13 @ 6:00pm
Going Sane (click for trailer)(2017) An exploration of problems with the flawed American mental health care system. Directed by Josh Sabey. 65 minutes Q&A with NAMI SFV members

Sun., Oct. 13 @ 8:00pm
Quiet Storm: The Ron Artest Story (click for trailer)(2018)  Addresses the up and down career of Artest, and the man and mental health advocate, World Peace is today. Director Johnny Sweet. 116 minutes IN PERSON Producer Colleen Dominguez


Mon., Oct. 14 @ 1:00pm
Ruined Wings (click for trailer)(2018) Seventeen-year-old Callie Novak sets a high school ski record when tragedy strikes and she succumbs to addiction. Director Sabrina Stewart. 44 minutes. US

Mon., Oct. 14
Family Day(2018) After three months in her third stint in rehab her sobriety is tested by a visit from her distant mother and loving stepfather. Director Harry O’Reilly.  17minutes. US

Mon., Oct. 14
Watermark(2019) When Meg moves in with her longtime boyfriend, she is suddenly terrorized by memories of a past trauma. Director Rebecca Maddalo. 24 minutes. USTRIGGER WARNING: VIOLENCE AND SUGGESTED RAPE.

Mon., Oct. 14
No More Mommies and Daddies(2019) A young girl haunted by the guilt and shame that she couldn’t save her family turns to self-harm. Director Tamara Farsadi, starring Julia Garcia. 9 minutes. US TRIGGER WARNING: INSTANCES OF SELF HARM.

Mon., Oct. 14
Milk Tea(2019) A drama set in Taiwan about an 11-year-old girl, HSUAN, who is suffocated by her dysfunctional family.  Director Chien-Ni Yang. 13 minutes.  Taiwan, Subtitled

Mon., Oct. 14
Max Fish(2019) An introverted lyricist gathers inspiration to finish a song that may be the key to resolving past trauma. Director Hash Sesay. 14 minutes. US

Mon., Oct. 14 @ 3:30pm
Pooch Sitter: A Film That Will Give You Paws (click for trailer)(2019) A quirky pet sitter seeks complete love and adoration from other people’s dogs, and a place to stay. Director Monda Webb. 15 minutesIN PERSON star Donna Deter and Dr. Andrew Cheng

Mon., Oct. 14
The Good Buoy(2018) One woman’s journey to overcome Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) through the help of her service dog, Paddington. Director Derek Ho. 10 minutes. Australia

Mon., Oct. 14
Beautifully, Positively Different(2019) A woman struggling with mental health and addiction issues, reaches a turning point. Director Sam Hedden. 12 minutes. US

Mon., Oct. 14
Through the Eyes of Our Children(2019) Melissa is a brave young woman who came to treatment with her Mom when she was 9. Director Kevin Hanlon. 5 minutes. USPresented by New Directions for Women

Mon., Oct. 14
Curtains(2019) A young woman suffering from chronic trauma and abuse enters a dissociative state. Director Katie Waldron. 5 minutes. USIN PERSON Katie Waldron

Mon., Oct. 14
In My House(2019) A young boy’s brother tries to shield him from his mother’s worsening addiction. Director Zackary Centrella. 4 minutes. US

Mon., Oct. 14 @ 5:00pm
Screenagers Next Chapter: Uncovering Skills for Stress Resilience (click for trailer)(2018) Explores the impact of social medial and screen time on young people’s mental and emotional well being. Director Delaney Ruston. 69 minutes. US

Five at 6:30

5 films by Kids In The Spotlight
Q&A with “Kids” following the films

Mon., Oct. 14 @ 6:30pm
Staying True(2018) “Different” kid bullied at new school is saved from suicide and which leads all the students to have a change in attitude. 8 minutes

Mon., Oct. 14 
Kurupted(2018) A school shooting is seen from 5 different perspectives. 14 minutes

Mon., Oct. 14 
System Failure(2018) What happens when a system set up to support a student, lets him down? 10 minutes

Mon., Oct. 14 
Saving Da’Lenzi(2018) Drugs, sex trafficking, courage and hope. 8 minutes

Mon., Oct. 14 
Love Just Is(2018) All we need is love and a little laughter. 6 minutes

All films written by and starring kids in the LA foster care system and directed by industry pros. For more info: https://www.kitsinc.org

Mon., Oct. 14 @ 8:00pm
Surviving Lunch (click for trailer)(2019) “Brilliantly written, filmed and acted, it captures the torture of abuse and the power we have by modeling compassionate behavior and speaking up with heart and support.” Director KT Curran. 75 minutesIN PERSON stars Clayton Royal Johnson and Francesca Phillips


Tue., Oct. 15 @ 1:00pm
Crystal City (click for trailer)
TRIGGER WARNING: DRUG USE, DRUG PARAPHERNALIA, SEX(2019) Meth has reached”epidemic levels within the gay community.” The reasons for that, and the ways some addicts are pursuing sobriety, provide the subject matter of this powerful film. Director Terrence Crawford. 89 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15
Hope Served Fresh – Recovery Friendly Employment (click for trailer)(2019) A pizzeria owner in Oneonta New York decides to create a “sober and recovery friendly” workplace. Director Jessica Vecchione. 15 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15
Opioid Scare(2019) A family affected by the opioid crisis struggles to stay together. Director Steve Cadigan. 6 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15
Don’t Worry Don’t Watch(2019) A graduate helps her drug-addicted brother overcome his addiction and reconnect with his family. Director Benjamin McGregor. 9 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15
Son to Son(2017) A late-night meeting between a father and son reveals an shocking secret lurking beneath the surface. Director Taron Lexton. 9 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15
Smack Edd(2018) Heroin addict Edd unexpectedly turns up to his son Patrick’s eighth birthday celebration. Director Greg Hall. 7 minutes. UK

Tue., Oct. 15
RE-REHAB(2018) A man, desperate to find his wife, searches for answers through the technology that may have caused her disappearance. Director Daeli Kim. 10 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15 @ 4:00pm
Fentanyl: A Street Battle In Town(2019) An intensive look at the life of the most underprivileged people in ‘Canada’s poorest postal codes’ called DTES (Vancouver Downtown-Eastside). Director Amir Payam. 41 minutes. Canada  

Tue., Oct. 15
How Addiction Happens(2017) Alex died of an accidental heroin/fentanyl overdose on his 22nd birthday, in December, 2015. Our family produced this video to help teens and their families avoid the painful path of addiction. Directed by Alex’s Family. 7 minutes. US IN PERSON Christine Henderson 

Tue., Oct. 15
RAW (2019) “RAW” chronicles the journey of a young woman’s struggle to reverse her descent into addiction and crime. Director Laurel Adler. 27 minutes. US IN PERSON Laurel Adler and Heather Nicole Lesser

Tue., Oct. 15
Burned Out Nurse (click for trailer) (2016) A perfect mother wife and registered nurse becomes addicted to opiates. Director Valerie Alleyne-Udeozor. 24 minutes. US IN PERSON star Narlyia Sterling

Tue., Oct. 15 @ 6:00pm
The First Day (click for trailer) (2019) Jonathan Hock and professional basketball player Chris Herren take a deeper look into the struggles facing our youth today. Director Jonathan Hock. 47 minutes. US

Tue., Oct. 15 @ 7:30pm
The Opioid Spoon Project (2019) a film about the nationally recognized artist- and activist-driven initiative committed to informing and educating the public. Director Joshua Berman. 10 minutes. US For more info: https://www.theopioidspoonproject.com

Tue., Oct. 15 @ 8:00pm
American Relapse (click for trailer) (2018) Recovering addicts Frankie and Allie spend their lives helping other addicts but can they stay clean themselves? Directors Pat McGee and Adam Linkenheit. 105 minutes. US  IN PERSON Pat McGee and star Allie Severino


Wed., Oct. 16 @ 1:00pm
Days of Wine and Roses (click for trailer) (1962) “Folie a deux” An alcoholic marries a young woman, whom he systematically addicts to booze so they can share his “passion” together. This film received 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Director Blake Edwards. Starring Jack Lemmon and Lee Remick. 117 minutes US

Wed., Oct. 16 
One (2019) “Absolutely one of the best films I’ve seen about alcoholism, pure genius” –Suzanne Payne. Director Luke Bradford. 3 minutes. UK

Wed., Oct. 16 @ 3:15pm
Voices (2019) Voices is a story about the choice we make, to listen to our addiction or our higher self. Director Matthew Smith. 13 minutes. Australia

Wed., Oct. 16 @ 3:30pm
Lifeline (2019) Roy is a depressed war veteran; when he gets the news that he has contracted HIV he reaches out to his old girlfriend who works at a crisis response center. Director Jayson Johnson. 11 minutes. US

Wed., Oct. 16
Behind Bars (click for trailer) (2019) Tobias, a lawyer by day and alcohol abuser by night, finds sobriety in a bartender battling his own painful addiction. Writer Kahla Franklin. 8 minutes. US

Wed., Oct. 16
Lover Gone – World Premiere (2018) A married couple leaves a party under the influence and ends up in the hospital after a head on car crash. Director James Bottom. 20 minutes. US

Wed., Oct. 16
Reservations – LA Premiere (2018) Mary confronts her mother about her drinking by driving her to an AA meeting instead of their regular restaurant. Writer/Producer Jeanine Flynn, director Neal Hemphill. 10 minutes. US

Wed., Oct. 16
Matchstick Willie (click for trailer) (2018) An alcoholic rodeo clown goes to his estranged wife’s funeral in hopes of reconnecting with the daughter he has not seen in over 20 years. Director D.R. Garrett. 14 minutes. US IN PERSON D.R. Garrett

Wed., Oct. 16 @ 4:45pm
How Do You Type A Broken Heart (2018) Woken by a midnight phone call, new mother Becky, reaches into the depths her soul to help a friend. Writer Susannah Nolan, director Jeremiah Kipp. 13 minutes. US IN PERSON Holly Curran

Wed., Oct. 16 
Recondition (2019) A blue-collar story about a young man’s recovery after a near fatal overdose. Writer Devon Coull, director Graham Patrick Martin. 21 minutes. USIN PERSON Devon Coull

Wed., Oct. 16 @ 6:00pm
Skid Row Marathon (click for trailer) (2017) A criminal court judge starts a running club on L.A.’s notorious skid row comprised of homeless drug addicts, a recovering single mom and a paroled murderer. Director Mark Hayes, producer Gabriele Hayes. 85 minutes IN PERSON Gabriele and Mark Hayes

Wed., Oct. 16 @ 8:00pm
Is Your Story Making You Sick? (click for trailer) (2018) One cannot watch this film without pondering their own childhood, its impact on their life and the possibility of transformation. Award winning director Frances Causey, writer and star Mark Pirtle. 92 minutes featuring Dr. Gabor MateIN PERSON Mark Pirtle


Thur., Oct. 17 @ 1:00pm
Esteban(2014) A depressed man doesn’t know how to deal with his everyday life. Francois Albaranes. 8 minutes. France, subtitled

Thur., Oct. 17
Il Figlio(2018) A man disguises himself as his dead sister to spare his mother the truth. Director Alessia Sambrini. 14 minutes. Italy, subtitled

Thur., Oct. 17
Safety(2019) Nap time turns deadly as a gym teacher must deal with an armed gunman. Oscar-winning director Fabrice Joubert. 14 minutes. US

Thur., Oct. 17
Glimmers of Light(2019) Carlo hasn’t left home for 6 months because of panic attacks,but a phone call by his sister and a girl met while chatting will both trouble his daily routine. Director Lorenzo Borghini. 8 minutes. Italy, subtitled

Thur., Oct. 17
And You Let Her Go – LA Premiere(2019) A young woman travels through time and grief as she visits her suicided sister’s room. Director Alexa Jade Houle. 10 minutes

Thur., Oct. 17
Unmasking – LA Premiere(2019) In a world where everyone wears masks to hide their true selves, a woman chooses whether to reveal herself to her boyfriend. Director Rob Comeau. 12 minutes. Canada

Thur., Oct. 17
Shadow At the Door – LA Premiere(2019) A troubled young woman searches for an intruder in her home. Director Roshni Bhatia. 4 minutesIN PERSON director Roshni Bhatia

Thur., Oct. 17
The Good Stuff(2017) A gambling addicted husband and his fed-up wife in the last day of their marriage. Director S.C. Smith. 4 minutes. US

Thur., Oct. 17
Staying Ahead(2018) Allan is a degenerate gambler trying to stay ahead of his estranged wife and bookie. Director Lee Kolinsky. 15 minutes. US

Thur., Oct. 17 @ 3:00pm
8 Ways to Well Being for Recovering People(2018) Instructions for people in recovery on how to improve their overall health and happiness through non-medical treatments. Director Scotty Avalos. 12 minutes. US IN PERSON Producer Sonnee Weedn, PhD

Thur., Oct. 17 
SLAW – LA Premiere(2019) Examines the notion of casual sex and the needs and desires that the players of this game bring along as baggage.  Directed by Leelee Stranger and Jake Sofaer. 24 minutes. USSEX AND NUDITY
IN PERSON: director and star Leelee Stranger

Thur., Oct. 17
I Woke Up in the Mud and Picked Up a Camera Because of Jonas(2019) Be it a friend in recovery who drinks again or a filmmaker who leaves a legacy, their ghostly memory lingers on in this experimental film. Director Devon Narine-Singh. 15 minutes. US

Thur., Oct. 17
Six Gifts(2018) The story of six individuals from all walks of life, their battles with addiction and failure, to their recovery and triumph. Director Nick Tribuno. 43 minutes. US

Thur., Oct. 17
Medicine In The Mind(2019) Asks the question, ‘If meditation is powerful medicine, why aren’t we using it to treat illness and disease?’ Director Michael O. Snyder. 40 minutes. US, India IN PERSON Dr. Tom Bowling

Thur., Oct. 17 @ 6:00pm
City At Sea(2018) A small time drug dealer, struggling with addiction, strives to escape his industrial port town. Director Christian Robertson. 93 minutes. Canada IN PERSON: director Christian Robertson

Thur., Oct. 17 @ 8:00pm
Dosed (click for trailer)(2019) A suicidal woman turns to alternative and illegal medicines, like Iboga and psychedelics to overcome her depression, anxiety, and opioid addiction. Director Tyler Chandler. Producers Nicholas Meyers, Tyler Chandler.  1 hour 22 minutes. USFeaturing Dr. Gabor Maté 
Panel with Tara Rodriquez (PsychedeliaIntegration.org), Ash Booth (AwareProject.org), Ryan Munevar (Decrimca.org), and Brad Adams (lapss.org)

Comments are closed.