Writer/Director Jennifer Lynch travels to India to make her career-defining film, but finds the dream slipping away instantly.
Screening under the “ReelWomen” and “Docufest” headers at the Chicago International Film Festival is the freshmen feature by Penny Vozniak, Despite the Gods; an account of Jennifer Lynch’s (daughter of David Lynch) dismayed attempt to cross Bollywood with Hollywood on her film Hisss. Although the concept sounds reminiscent of Lost in La Mancha - whereas filmmakers intended to show Terry Gilliam triumph through impossible odds, but ended up capturing the abject failure – Vozniak saw the storm over the horizon, stating “I could see the tragicomedy of the situation unfolding, and the tension between producer and director bubbling under the surface.” Originally there to visit friend, Hisss Producer Govind Menon and babysit Lynch’s daughter, who was onset, Vozniak instead stayed on for the duration of production, camera in hand, to catch two worlds colliding.
Despite the Gods is a raw and elucidative look at the contrast between shooting a movie on the Eastern half of the globe opposed to the Western, and the fine-spun composure of a woman trying to juggle her roles as Director, single mother, and independent figure of her highly regarded progenitors. It depicts a rare breed of people making a unique piece of cinema, and the ways it can go wrong.
Despite the Gods will be playing October 17th and 18th. Tickets may be purchased here.