The Human Experience
|This article may need to be rewritten entirely to comply with Wikipedia's quality standards. (November 2010)|
|The Human Experience|
|Directed by||Charles Kinnane|
|Produced by||Joseph Campo|
|Written by||Michael Campo|
|Music by||Thomas J. Bergersen|
|Edited by||Charles Kinnane|
|Distributed by||Grassroots Films|
|Running time||90 minutes|
The Human Experience (2008) is a documentary produced by Grassroots Films. The film tells the story of Jeffrey Azize and his travels as he searches for answers to the question "What does it mean to be human?". The film is divided into the three experiences which take Jeffrey and his friends to New York, Peru, and Ghana. The Human Experience is rated PG-13.
The first experience follows Jeffrey and his brother Clifford to the streets of New York City where the boys live with the homeless for a week in one of the coldest winters on record. The boys look for hope and camaraderie among their homeless companions, learning how to survive on the streets.
During their second experience, the brothers join a group of surfers from Surf For The Cause  traveling to Peru. There, they visit a hospital for abandoned children in the foothills of the Andes Mountains. The boys are surprised to find joy among the children and their caretakers despite serious medical problems.
Throughout the story, the film features commentary from spiritual, artistic, and medical experts and philosophers, including William B. Hurlbut M.D.; Rabbi Simon Jacobson; Dr. Alveda King; and Rev. Richard Neuhaus.
Their final experience takes the brothers, along with their friends Michael Campo and Matthew Sanchez, to Africa. Michael is on his way to visit a leper colony in rural Ghana. On their way to the colony, the boys meet victims of AIDS and their families. Once they reach the leper colony, they befriend disfigured lepers who have been exiled from their villages.
At the end of the film, the boys return to their life in New York with a changed outlook and insight into the human condition.
Also, at the end of the film Jeffrey and Clifford have a surprise meeting with their father and are reunited with their father. Their father has not seen his children in 10 years, but Jeffrey and Clifford still love him.
Screenings and releases
Pre-screenings of the film were held within the United States as well as internationally. The film was initially screened in “rough cut”. The first public pre-screening was held on January 26, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona.
The Human Experience was theatrically released in select Harkins Theatres in Arizona, Colorado, and Texas on April 9, 2010 in the midst of a world screening tour. The tour encompassed over 400 screenings in 15 countries across North America, South America, Europe, and Australia.
The film was well received at the Maui Film Festival (2008). Harriet Yahr of indieWire called it, "A doc with so much heart in the right place." Alicia Colon, writer for the Irish Examiner and NYSUN.com of the described The Human Experience as, "Inspiring... an affirmation of what binds all of us around the world-our humanity."
The film has also been endorsed by several religious entities. The Archbishop of Denver released a statement on his official website. "Grassroots Films has produced an astonishing witness to the beauty of the human person under the most trying conditions. For anyone committed to the cause of human dignity, or simply hungry to again see the beauty in life, it shouldn’t be missed."  In June, the Archbishop of Krakow, Poland sent an open letter to the producers of The Human Experience, which concluded with a hope that the film would "contribute to an ever deeper knowledge of the essence of human life and human dignity." 
The film has won many awards and festival accolades, including the Audience Choice Award at the American Cinematic Experience at Tribeca (2009 ACEfest)  and Best Documentary at the Atlanta International Documentary Film Festival (2009 DocuFest Atlanta).
An original score composed by Thomas J. Bergersen is featured in The Human Experience. The soundtrack, titled The Human Experience: Music from the Motion Picture was released on March 29, 2011.
- "Surf For The Cause". Surf For The Cause. Retrieved 2011-11-15.
- Yahr, Harriette. "DISPATCH FROM HAWAII | Nature and Film Combine for Celestial Maui Fest." Indiewire.com. SnagFilms, 17 Jun 2008. Web. 20 Apr 2011. <http://www.indiewire.com/article/dispatch_from_hawaii_nature_and_film_combine_for_celestial_maui_fest/#>.
- Colon, Alicia. "‘The Human Experience’ Review: Inspiring Doc About Our Shared Humanity." Big Hollywood. Breitbart, 02 Dec 2010. Web. 20 Apr 2011. <http://bighollywood.breitbart.com/aliciacolon/2010/12/02/the-human-experience-review-inspiring-doc-about-our-shared-humanity/>.
- Chaput, Charles J. "Archbishop Chaput endorses "The Human Experience"." Archdiocese of Denver. Breitbart, 15 Apr 2010. Web. 20 Apr 2011. <http://www.archden.org/index.cfm/ID/3720>.
- Dziwisz, Stanislaw. "Cardinal Stanislaw Dziwisz Blesses "The Human Experience"." Grassroots Films. Blogspot, 01 Jun 2010. Web. 20 Apr 2011. <http://grassrootsfilms.blogspot.com/2010/06/cardinal-stanislaw-dziwisz-blesses_01.html>.
- "ACEFEST 2009." ACEFEST New York. N.p., 2009. Web. 20 Apr 2011. <http://www.acefest.com/past/fest09/fest2009.php>.
- "DocuFest Atlanta Awards." DocuFest Atlanta. N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Apr 2011. <http://www.docufest.com/awards.html>.