Tom Shadyac, the director of Ace Ventura, Liar Liar, The Nutty Professor, and more steps away fromt the world of comedy into the more serious documentary scene. His film I AM is vastly different than his previous productions as it brings in conscious living and it centers on the state of the world and how we got here.
Shadyac made his change in the film industry due to a serious mountain biking accident that left him with post-concussion syndrome. Post-concussion syndrome causes the individual’s concussive symptoms to stay after the impact, which often leads to major headaches and intense sensitivity to noise and lights. The months that ensued lead Shadyac to reflect on whether this was going to be the end of his life, and if it was, what would he want to leave behind that would benefit the world.
I AM asks two major questions as it interviews influential leaders, historians, scientists and more. The questions that Shadyac asks are: “what is wrong with the world?” and “how do we fix it?” The answer that emerges is nothing short of profound and deeply impactful to us all.
While interviewing Desmond Tutu, Howard Zimm, Noam Chomsky, Lynne McTaggart and more, Shadyac starts to see an underlying thread that we as humans are living a mechanistic and lonely existence instead of an organic and connected one. As a society, we have bought into ‘only the strong survive’ and ‘alpha dominant’ mentality based on Darwin’s work The Descent of Man. It is pointed out in the documentary that this is a gross misinterpretation of Darwin’s work… survival of the fittest is only mentioned three times in the entire book, yet love and cooperation are mentioned more than 97 times.
Shadyac is taken even deeper into a field of energy that connects us all and ‘entangles’ us as inseparable beings. It is explained that we are all a part of the same field of energy and our physiological and psychological states are deeply affected by it. In the end, we are all one and treating each other as separate leads to violence, war, loneliness, and ignorance.
Shadyac makes the move to empower the viewer to change the answer of each individual being the problem with the world to being the solution. This amazingly heartfelt documentary will take you on a journey to reevaluate the relationships in your life and how we have a larger impact than we are lead to believe.
Documentary Citation – Shadyac, Tom. “I Am.” I AM The Documentary , Production Company Homemade Canvas Productions Shady Acres, 1 Oct. 2010, www.iamthedoc.com/