Ken Paul Rosenthal - Mad Dance Mental Film Trilogy


Average: 3.5 (4 votes)

Mad Dance is a trilogy of provocative and beautiful short films that re-envision the way we think, speak and feel about mental distress and wellness in today’s chaotic world. These transformative films offer new maps for navigating madness with insight, healing and hope.

For Shadows is a contemplative, multi-layered memoir that unravels the tangled roots of self-harm and explores the process of coming to terms with one’s shadow. The home movies of a child’s formative years and an interior landscape of traumatic domestic memories are excavated and re-constructed alongside sound clips from archival mental hygiene films.

In Light, In! is a haunting, visual essay about the awkward and angry junctures where our culture struggles to manage its emotional distress. Images recycled from 1950’s-era educational films are accompanied by original compositions by cellist, Zoe Keating.

Crooked Beauty, newly subtitled in English, Spanish, French, German, Italian and Hebrew. This internationally acclaimed poetic documentary chronicles artist-activist Jacks McNamara’s transformative journey from psych ward inpatient to pioneering mental health advocacy. It is an intimate portrait of her intense personal quest to live with courage and dignity, and a powerful critique of standard psychiatric treatments. Poignant testimonials connect the fissures and fault lines of human nature to the unstable topography and mercurial weather patterns of the San Francisco Bay Area.

"This inspiring movie will lead you to think anew about what it may be like to experience 'madness', and the best pathways to recovery." - Robert Whitaker, Author of Anatomy of an Epidemic and Mad in America

This informative and inspiring 70-minute trilogy is appropriate for academic study in:
- Psychology, Psychiatry, Counseling and Art Therapy
- Social Work, Social Justice, Women’s Studies
- Documentary and Experimental Film, Photography

 “A soulful and thought-provoking springboard for classroom discussions, challenging art and psychology students to creatively expand the way we navigate the dark and light in our lives.”   - Paige Greason, PhD, Clinical Director, Counseling Services, University of North Carolina

“Mesmerizing works of art with the transformative powers of great poems.”   - Robert Whitaker, Anatomy of an Epidemic and Mad in America

“Visually stunning, emotionally nuanced, and socially enlightening.”   - Sackler Center for Arts Education, The Guggenheim Museum

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15 USD


Publishing date: 

Sunday, November 10, 2013


70 min






English, Spanish, French, German, Italian & Hebrew



Aspect ratio: 



Colour & B&W