Violence Against Women | Spec Commercial


Producer | Director | Creative – Dana Newell
Cinematographer – Alper Kasap
Runner: Annie Chapman
Editor – Raechel Harding
Music – Nate Kohrs
Actor: Bec Caldwell

The idea behind the creative concept

What if we take the men out of the picture, out of the story that you see? I know, crazy right? How can you show that violence against women is bad unless we see the evil, look ‘him’ in the face.. in the eye. But hear me out.

In his New York Best Seller “Contagious” Jonah Berger explains that after the anti drugs campaign took off in the early 90’s in the States, drug taking amongst young people went up. Why? Because the public believed that if the government felt like they needed to spend so much money on preventing it, then everyone must be doing it. And if “I’M” not doing it, I must be the odd one out. Who wants to be the odd one out? People do what they see everyone else doing. Berger believes that “monkey see, monkey do” still rings true today.

So even though we are seeing men treat women poorly on screen and the implications of those around them telling them it’s ‘not cool’, are these campaigns making men think differently?

Unfortunately, I don’t have access to these hard stats, I am simply asking this question based off Berger’s research. Food for thought anyway.

The idea behind my creative concept is about public solitude or ‘our different versions of ourselves’. We are paradoxical creatures, there are different sides of human nature and we don’t usually unveil all of them to the public. There is always more to a person’s story then what you see on the surface.

David Powlison who is a councilor and author of “Good & Angry” and “Sexual Assault: Healing Steps for Victims” says that “Sexual assault is an invasive event of traumatic evil. You were victimized, and now you are suffering.” He goes on to explain that one of the side effects of sexual assault is anger.

So here lies the genesis for our story. We’ve created a vortex where we jump between two worlds, so to speak. The version that she shows the world, the angry side filled with self protection and pushing people away, and the vulnerable side that she only dreams that someone could see.

So I wanted to get an idea across to not see people at face value but to try and look past their armour, and as Brene Brown, research professor at the University of Houston says ‘assume positive intent’ because people are just people. We are all trying to do the best we can, and we need each other.

So next time you see a young woman who is perhaps a little more emotional, try not to judge at face value. If they will let us, try and push through the vortex into her other self and reach out to the real vulnerable woman underneath. Let’s treat the cause from the inside out, instead of what we see at face value. The road to change and healing isn’t as easy as Bob Newhart’s “STOP IT” video would have us believe. Although it is a nice thought and quite funny!