We've featured the work of writer/director William Goss here on the site in the past, and are always pleased whenever he sends along a new short for our perusal. Today we've got his latest work, Sweet Steel, which premiered at the SXSW Film Festival earlier this year and now (after enjoying festival runs in a number of other cities) has finally made its way online.
In typical Goss fashion, it's a darkly comic piece (trigger warning: attempted suicide) that ends on an unexpectedly hopeful, heartfelt note. See what you think.
Goss is both a friend of the site and a friend of mine, and after watching this short I asked him what his thought process was in making it. Here's what he told me:
"Sweet Steel was borne as much of economic limitations as emotional ones. When struggling with severe depression, it becomes easy to disengage and preoccupy one's self with the airtight logic of pursuing a potentially self-destructive impulse, but I was more often brought back from taking things too far by some roundabout means of distraction. For me, the only hope I tend to take to heart has to feel hard-won rather than some well-meaning but ultimately hollow advice about reaching out for help when it's the last thing your brain can fathom doing.
Our stylistic approach to the story felt like the easiest (read: cheapest) way to emulate that locked-in, blinders-on feeling of hopeless process for anyone who's had the good fortune to never feel that way and then follow that despair through to an earned moment of possibility that might ring true to the people who need to hear it, but maybe have to come to it by taking a depressive scenic route of sorts."
Mental health's something that's particularly important to us here at Birth.Movies.Death., and something that's specifically important to me: I've been going to therapy for the past few years, and welcoming that help into my life has been one of the best decisions I've made for myself since...well, ever, really. We all cope with grief and depression and our worst impulses in our own ways, but not one of us can take all of that on alone. I was oddly touched by Goss' short and moved to share it with you, and I hope y'all got as much out of it as I did.