How can forgiveness occur in the face of unspeakable acts of horror? The stories of this film, told by the survivors, attest to the place of forgiveness even after the most horrible of crimes.
The main part of this film consists of these survivors relating their stories directly to the camera. A Canadian mother tells how her daughter was raped and strangled. A husband tells how his wife was killed by a bomb blast perpetrated by the IRA in Ireland. A mother relates the story of her daughter who was killed by an al Qaida bombing of a subway in London. A daughter tells of her father’s death at the hands of a schizophrenic neighbor in Newfoundland.
They speak of the facts of the crimes, and they talk candidly of their overwhelming anger. And then they speak of forgiveness: not a shallow forgiveness of “It’s okay,” but a forgiveness that allows them to move forward.
……….. Despite the subject matter, the director has fashioned a film that is longer on hope than on depression. Each of these survivors had a moment where he or she found a new place, one of forgiveness and reconciliation, and this is what comes through clearly in the film.
While the subject matter may seem grisly to some—and there are scenes that may be too graphic for the squeamish—this film would be an interesting springboard for discussion for religious studies and criminal justice classes, as well as other interested adult groups.
Forgiveness takes the viewer inside the lives of those who some may argue deserve to nurse their anger, but who have found a way instead to set themselves free.