Sitting on a Story

Sitting on a Story

Release date:

1997

Running time:

47 minutes

Formats:

Available on DVD

Closed Captioned:

No

Availability in North America:

Available in CanadaAvailable in the US

Outside North America? Click here for availability information.

  • Audience level:
  • Elementary School
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  • General

Park benches--for most of us they are just a place to sit. In Vancouver, British Columbia, they have become much more than that. With the help of the city park board's bench program, citizens are able to express their grief and their love.

In this charming documentary, Pat Barker chronicles these memorials through their donor's heartfelt stories of tragedy, romance, and remembrance. From the wife who comes to clean her husband's bench, to the gay man who brings his dogs to the bench dedicated to his partner, to the man who owns numerous benches--including one dedicated to the 1993 Vancouver Summit between Bill Clinton and Boris Yeltsin--fond reminiscences stay fresh. Intertwined throughout are the accounts of the bench program workers and of those who read these monuments, like author Bill Richardson, emphasize the role the benches play in bringing a community together.

Sitting on a Story illustrates the search for healing after a loved one's death. It also celebrates the exuberance and humour of humankind.

Award: Best Cultural Documentary, Hot Docs Festival 1998

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