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The families of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School were no different -- until the afternoon of Valentine’s Day this year, when a gunman walked into the freshman building and opened fire. In the aftermath of the shooting, filmmakers Emily Taguchi and Jake Lefferman began filming with students and families whose lives were transformed: senior David Hogg, who recorded his class during the attack and became the public face of the Never Again movement to end gun violence; freshman Brooke Harrison, who was in the first classroom that came under attack; Sam Zeif, a senior who was locked down in the same building, texting with his little brother and unsure if they would ever see each other again; Andrew Pollack, the father of 18-year old Meadow, who was killed after being shot nine times; and the loved ones of 17 year-old Joaquin Oliver, including his father Manuel, girlfriend Victoria Gonzalez, and best friend Dillon McCooty.
The filmmakers developed trusting relationships with the families, who continuously opened their doors during some of the most difficult and personal moments they had faced in their lives. Weaving together candid, in-depth interviews, verite footage, and personal videos and photos, the film chronicles moments both intimate and defining -- ranging from the quiet hours of grief and reflection, to those of political awakening, and onto pivotal milestones on the public stage -- all overshadowed by profound loss and an elusive search for normalcy.
With the country reeling from endless waves of school shootings, the film seeks answers to a series of questions: What can we learn from a student who has stared down the barrel of a gun in their own classroom? When a child is ripped away so violently and so senselessly, how does a family move forward? And lastly, how does a community rebuild when its name becomes synonymous with one of the worst acts of gun violence in American history?
'After Parkland' starts with the shooting but for only a brief moment, the apparent anger and drive in the events to follow immediately apparent with students, one specific individual evacuated from the building, asking first responders as he records on his iPhone “Are we really doing this again?” ...