Dixiletta’s hour-long documentary on homelessness, The Road Back Home, will be aired on Eight World on Thursday, February 5th at 8:00pm and again on Tuesday, February 10th at 6pm. Phoenix filmmakers Robert Felix and Dixie Cook of Dixiletta Moving Pictures produced and directed the film, which follows the lives of five homeless people over a two year period. Their stories enlighten the viewer on how they became homeless and how they struggle to overcome their plight. The film also illuminates how they can be helped.
The filmmakers went through an extensive process to locate five people who could illustrate the wide reach of homelessness in Arizona. The first person they found, while visiting the Human Services Campus, was Gen, a mother of a five year old son from an upper middle class background whose depression had caused her to become homeless only hours before the filmmakers met her. Heisley is the film’s featured veteran, who served for more than a decade but whose PTSD and traumatic brain injury led him to a home where he could stay in exchange for going door-to-door for donations. The youngest person featured in the film is Alicia, a college-aged girl who found herself homeless after her birth mother, with whom she’s stayed for just a few weeks, kicked her out. The film includes a dramatic re-creation of her first night without a place to stay. To illustrate chronic homelessness, the filmmakers found Marcos who has lived for years on the street near his childhood home, which has since been replaced by the airport rental car facility. Eileen and her three children illustrate family homelessness, and the struggle to take care of others when there is barely enough to care for oneself.
The Road Back Home blends the stories of Gen, Heisley, Alicia, Marcos, and Eileen with interviews of leaders among Valley homelessness advocates. As the stories unfold, so too does a sense of what needs to be done to provide adequate help for the homeless, a matter of getting to know individual lives and being open to providing significant, personalized intervention.
Click here to watch a trailer of The Road Back Home.
Eight World can be watched on 8.3 over the air, on channel 88 on Cox cable, or on CenturyLink Prism channel 7.