YOUR FILMS SEEM TO HAVE EVOLVED FROM DEALING WITH A UNIQUE INDIVIDUAL — LIKE SICK — TO TAKING ON BROADER, MORE POLITICAL TOPICS. WHY THE CHANGE? I think the transition point was Twist of Faith. It started out focusing on individuals, as a psychological study about the impact of abuse. Once the film was finished, it took on this political aspect as well because obviously we are still in the throes of the discussion. I don't know if all my films are like this, but certainly there is a greater interest in taking on issues that have to deal with justice. And also, taking on an institution adds an element of drama. I still try to bring in the psychological as much as possible, but for a filmmaker it increases the complexity by including this political element as well. When you spend two years on a film, the more complex and rich and broad the subject becomes.
YOU'VE MADE FILMS ABOUT BOTH, SO WHICH WOULD YOU SAY IS MORE SCREWED UP, THE CATHOLIC CHURCH OR THE MILITARY? I'm somewhat more optimistic about the military, actually. Partially because they dealt with racism, they had "Don't Ask, Don't Tell." And it's under civilian control, it's under the control of a democracy as opposed to a . . . what would you call the Catholic Church?
A BUNCH OF CRAZY OLD MEN? Especially recently, with the treatment of nuns. It's going in completely the opposite direction. What I learned from making Twist of Faith was that the Catholic Church looks at things in terms of centuries or millennia, and a couple of decades of bad press is not an issue for them. They're going to ride this out.
Read the extended version of this interview at thephoenix.com/blogs/outsidetheframe.
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