The Further Adventures of David Roche

Lynne Murray says:

When I checked in on the irrepressible Dave Roche, whose memoir, The Church of 80% Sincerity, I reviewed here in 2008, I had no idea that Dave had gone and joined a gang–a gang of five to be specific–and taken part in a film, Shameless: The Art of Disability.

Filmmaker Bonnie Sherr Klein says, in the first few seconds of the film, that she started from a place where:

I thought disability was hideous and I couldn’t stand to walk by a mirror and see myself walking … and now the film I’m making …. grows right out of that impulse to … correct the images and have people tell their own stories. Because people with disabilities have not been represented in the media in anything like the truth that I’ve discovered of … our lives.

The gang of five describes themselves as: Bonnie Klein, earnest filmmaker; Catherine Frazee, writer, disability guru; Persimmon Blackbridge, visual artist, writer, “badgirl”; David Roche, aka “Reverend Dave,” writer and humorist; Geoff McMurchy, artistic director KickstART Festival, “Renaissance guy”

These “fellow travelers” take the viewer on a journey described by the National Film Board of Canada:

Art and activism are the starting point for a funny and intimate portrait of five surprising individuals with diverse disabilities. Packed with humour and raw energy, this film follows the gang of five from B.C. to Nova Scotia as they create and present their own images of their disabilities.

Although it was released in 2008, Dave notes at Irked Magazine that the entire 71-minute film can be (theoretically) viewed in full online for free at the National Film Board of Canada site. I say “theoretically” because in the interests of full disclosure I must say that my aging computer (or possibly my low-speed DSL connection) demonstrated its techno-disability by not being able to show more than a few minutes without stalling. So I’ve seen the first seven minutes of the film three times and the rest not yet. I can say that the wit and hard-won self-confidence of the participants shows from the first moments.

In case your computer and connection are faster, the complete film is here:

Aside from his film work, David is crafting a new performance piece on “Catholic Erotica,” which definitely contains “Language & themes not suitable for children.” It can be previewed here.