예전에 ‘Golden Gate Bridge의 명암‘이라는 글에서도 언급한 바 있는 자살 문제를 현장에서 직접 필름에 담은 다큐멘터리 영화인데 실제로 20여명의 자살을 시도한 사람들과 그들의 가족을 기록하였다고 한다. 그동안 대중 미디어매체를 통해 실제로 자살하는 장면을 공개한 사례가 얼마나 있는지 모르겠지만 윤리적으로 많은 논란을 일으키고 있는 모양이다.
The Golden Gate Bridge, with its views of the San Francisco Bay and skyline, is an American icon and a major tourist destination. But it is also the site of more suicides than any other place in the world. The question of why this particular bridge is such a magnet for suicides (along with the broader issue of suicide, and mental illness in general) is explored in Eric Steele’s debut documentary, which he began to work on after reading Tad Friend’s New Yorker article on the subject. Every day during 2004, Steele set up his cameras and filmed the Golden Gate Bridge during daylight hours. Day after day, he and his crew observed thousands of people crossing the bridge on foot from San Francisco to Marin County and back. They filmed everyone from tourists to bicyclists, but ever so often a person would climb over one small part of the bridge’s mile-long railing and let go. However, while the camera can record the act of suicide, it cannot tell us what leads a person to such an extreme action or what thoughts run through someone’s mind during those last moments. In an attempt to uncover some of these mysteries, Steele crossed the country in order to interview friends and families of the jumpers he captured on film, on-scene witnesses to various jumps, and even a jump survivor. These testimonials elevate the jumpers in the film from nameless statistics to human beings whose lives have inexorably led them to a tragically decisive moment on the Golden Gate Bridge. Like the bridge itself, this film is beautiful, powerful, and possesses an underlying darkness.