|David M. Edwards|
Like many of my generation in the United States, I grew up in the suburbs. It wasnít until I was late in my teens that I was introduced to city life and all that it could offer. My experience was one of isolation, and to some degree resignation. These two identifiable notions became increasingly clear as I entered my teen years, and sought to explore my autonomy, and dare I mention, discover girls.
Sure, there were other teens to play and hangout with in the pastoral setting of neatly groomed parks and green spaces, but beyond that, there was really no place to go. No extraordinary experiences to be found. Ultimately, my friends and I found our selves hanging around in what I now realize were some of the most undesirable places I can think of. We would gather on the fringe of our suburban subdivision, smoking cigarettes atop the hills of newly excavated earth, earth that gave way to the construction sites where the next tier of suburbia was to be built. We would gather in the basements of each otherís suburban homes playing Atari games, listening to rock and roll, raiding our parentís liquor cabinets, and experimenting with drugs that dulled our senses into acceptance of this mundane existence. One day bled into the next without distinction. Our lives mirrored the homogeneity of the communities we lived in. And so, we emulated the architecture that surrounded us. There were no stores, cafes, or arcades to gather in. No jobs for teens within walking or biking distance. No place to meet someone new and interesting, outside of those neighbors who lived close by. Just, row upon row of neatly kept houses that only varied in appearance every third house. And so, we bided our time, waiting for that magic age. Sixteen. Freedom. If only I could drive. If only I had a car. Iíd go anywhere. Iíd do anything. Oh, and girls.
As a result of this experience, I became what was referred to as a motor head. I ingested information about cars like there was no end. I grew to understand the intricacies of their power, the size of their engine, the gearing, the handling, and their sex appeal. I wanted the biggest, fastest, most gas-guzzling car I could build. Cameros, Tempests, GTOís, Firebirds, and Mustangs, theses were the cars I built into road ripping genius.
To this day I still love cars. Their power still attracts me. I have raced them, collected them, and coveted them. They will remain in my psyche as a symbol of freedom. They represent the moment at which I took control of my life. A moment, when I could go places that matteredÖto me.
It was about this time that I found, or discovered, the city. A whole community of kids my age. They talked about interesting things. They were engaged. They cared about things. They were brilliant. They went about their lives in a way that was different from me. They walked to where they met. They came from diverse backgrounds, and brought that diversity with them. There was such a sensual mingling of ideas and feelings. The possibility of saying something, having your ideas discussed intellectually for their validity, and then taking those responses to confirm or adjust your view, was heady.
I know that otherís experiences will differ from mine. I cannot speak to their experience. But, I canít help but think that we are all experiencing the same questions and trepidations during these troubling times. Oil is now trading at $108 a barrel. We are feeling the impacts of the sub-prime mortgage crisis, and we are continually seeing the erosion of our economy. The days of the gas-guzzling cars must end. The days of driving to every destination must stop.
As a parent, I have so many concerns for my children. My wish would be that I could hand their futures to them, as if presented on a golden plate, and say, "Here is your future, itís promising. Take care of it.Ē But, that will not be. Their future is fraught with challenges we canít even imagine. We are handing our children an earth that is in the peril of global warming, a society that will have to grapple with diminishing resources, and a society that must struggle with our mistakes of previous investment. This is what we have to offer them. This is what we have built for them. We owe them a grave apology.
It is my wish that through this film I can awake the stewards in all of us to kindle a vision of hope. A vision of something we can be proud to hand to the next generation, something that will help to provide meaning to their lives, something sustainable that they may give to their children.
David M. Edwards is an award winning director and filmmaker. Coming to the position of Director via the editing suite, he is a highly detailed individual who is adept at seeing the big picture and is skilled at shaping the vision for film projects. He started EMotion Pictures Productions, LLC in 1995 with the intention of focusing his career on documentaries and narrative feature films. Since the founding of EMotion Pictures, Dave Edwards has established himself as a respected individual among film and video professionals and is a respected member in the Denver business community.
After many years of success creating commercial and promotional media for such companies as Time Warner Telecom and US West, David decided to steer his career back to his original intentions. Sprawling From Grace; Driven To Madness is his first feature film documentary. David is currently in post-production of his second feature film documentary Justice In Uganda; Dancing Without Music, which is scheduled for completion in late 2008, and is in pre-production for his debut feature film narrative The Ship.