Sunday, 20 January 2013

Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father (2008)

At 39 years of age, and being “a man” it’s rarely that anything can cause me to shed a tear when it comes to watching a film or documentary, let me just say Dear Zachary is that documentary, a piece of filmmaking so moving, so compassionately made, and so horrifying that having watched it, it not only caused me to cry, but it kept me awake most of the night.

Kurt Kuenne is a filmmaker; in his more youthful years he made all of his movies (designed for a select audience) with his best friend Andrew Bagby. These two friends were like brothers (as are many of the other people who encounter Andrew through his life). To Kurt’s horror one day his best friend Andrew is found brutally murdered. Kurt then discovers that Andrew’s on/off girlfriend is pregnant, and in order to tell baby Zachary the story of his father’s life, he travels around the world collecting footage, and taking interviews with the people who mattered in Andrew’s life. But when Kurt started making the film he had no idea of the horror he was about to reveal.

Many moviemakers try to create movies to horrify their audience, Dear Zachary proves that the greatest horror, the most appalling things that you can possibly think of happen very much in the very real and disturbing world we live in. It also should be said, that while it shows the greatest horror, it also shows the great kindness in the human soul at the same time, the people that keep giving to life, to get nothing in return. 

The story that unfolds in the documentary is incredibly sad, but the horrendous and disturbing shock that occurs three quarters of the way through will rock you to your very soul.

Documentaries often seem very cold and clinical, but because everyone involved in the documentary including Kurt, has genuine love for both Andrew and son Zachary it allows the viewer to fully immerse into their world. You literally feel the love in every single minute of this documentary, even at the points of great upset. 

I have opted to keep the story of this documentary, as secret as possible, and I’d love to write more on this subject, but dear potential viewer the strength, the passion of this terrible story comes in the slow discovery of this journey.

Kurt Kuenne is not just an incredible documentary filmmaker, but the true depiction of what a friend is. Dear Zachary is without a doubt the greatest, most moving, emotional, loving documentary I have ever seen. Kuenne has ensured that Andrew Bagby’s story is never forgotten.

You can purchase Dear Zachary on region free DVD from Amazon by clicking the link below, all the profits made from the film go to a foundation in Andrew's name. 

1 comment:

  1. Just watched it. Some stories are just too sad to share. Heartbreaking.