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The Interventionists: Chronicles of a Mental Health Crisis
Directed by Katerina Cizek
Produced by Gerry Flahive
A National Film Board of Canada Production
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The Bicycle, Drawing From Life, Hand-Held, and The Interventionists are all included on one DVD for the price of $248

THE INTERVENTIONISTS follows the days and nights of a unique crisis team working their cases in downtown Toronto. Ellen is a mental health nurse. Brandon is a specially trained police officer. Together, they ride the streets of the inner city in an unmarked police vehicle, responding to 911 police calls involving "Emotionally Disturbed Persons." One of the first of its kind, the team is a special partnership between St. Michael's Hospital and Police Divisions 51 and 52, in South East/Central Toronto. Their mandate is to decriminalize mental health issues. Together the team de-escalate crises to avoid unnecessary arrests and emergency room visits by providing appropriate referrals, services and resources within a patients' own community.

With unprecedented access, THE INTERVENTIONISTS follows the team from case to case. The calls are hastily labelled at 911 dispatch as "threatened suicides," "bizarre behaviour," "person gone berserk" or simply "EDP": Emotionally Disturbed Person. Once they arrive on scene, however, with time, patience and expertise, the team peels away at the labels, to get at the underlying causes for the crisis, revealing the complex and often tragic situations faced by people living with mental illness.


31 minutes / color
Closed Captioned
Release: 2010
Copyright: 2009
Sale: $248

Subject areas:
Closed Captioned, Criminal Justice, Fanlight Collection, Mental Health, Psychology, Social Work

Related Titles:
The Bicycle: Fighting AIDS with community medicine in Malawi.

Drawing From Life: A half-hour film that goes inside a group therapy workshop for people who have attempted suicide more than once.

Hand-Held: A documentary anthology on health and homelessness, and a frank and invaluable resource for anyone interested in how media and medicine can work together to change lives.

The 7 Interventions of Filmmaker-in-Residence: The story of a groundbreaking project in media intervention at an inner-city hospital. What happens when documentary filmmaking, photoblogs, digital storytelling and more are used to investigate complex health issues?

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Last Updated August 17, 2015
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