End of life issues: What happens after the end

Roswell resident creates documentary on coping with loss of loved ones

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ROSWELL, Ga. —After the loss of a loved one, many people have human questions they seek answers for they cannot find through scientific studies or medical journals.

To provide a glance at this complex topic, Andrew Morgan, local Roswell resident and filmmaker, created a documentary “After the End” that focused on the human aspect of how real people across the country deal with the loss of someone they loved.

“It came out of the loss of my father two years ago,” Morgan said. “I had a lot of questions about grief, loss and how we are supposed to deal with it when someone we love dies.”

About a year after his father’s death, Morgan set out to make his film. He began by reaching out to different people he found through blogs, previous works on loss and research.

Out of 30 people Morgan narrowed his search to eight families ranging from the loss of siblings, parents, and children.

“We wanted to make a film that was ultimately very human, and we wanted to honor the pain but also point toward hope,” Morgan said. “We talked to people about the experience of loss, grief and how they continued to live their lives fully and love people in their lives after they had experienced a thing like that.”

Morgan and his crew stayed with all of the families featured in the documentary for a few days to get to know them on a personal level.

“It was a series of conversations, not just one, and it was very casual,” Morgan said. “The experience that we had—sitting at kitchen tables and in living rooms—is ultimately what we wanted to come out through the show.”

Morgan said he was surprised at how much he didn’t know about loss when he started making this documentary.

“The process of experiencing other people’s pain drew it out of me, and it was a good thing,” Morgan said. “Making the film allowed me to grieve the loss of my dad, but there were days where it was very challenging to spend time in the midst of something people typically ignore.”

When something painful happens that takes more than a day to get over, Morgan said he typically tries to move on and block it out of his mind, but he spent several months filming in the middle of grief and pain.

“To be in it with these people was difficult, but in the end it was very rewarding,” Morgan said. “We were determined to addressing it on a very honest, human and unpolished view point, but it does also point to a positive and hopeful place.”

Morgan held a one-time viewing July 13 at 7:30 p.m. at the Aurora Cineplex in Roswell, but “After the End” will be featured on DVD, Netfix and Hulu August 27.

“I am incredibly proud of the film and what we made,” Morgan said. “It feels a little bit vulnerable, because I know people that will be watching it. There is a portion of my story that will be in the film, but it feels cool to have attention being put on a topic that affects all of us.”

To see the trailer visit www.aftertheendmovie.com.

This article was published in the July 25 issue of the Revue and News