Cipher in the Snow
|Cipher in the Snow|
|Directed by||Keith J. Atkinson|
Keith J. Atkinson
|Written by||Jean Mizer|
|Screenplay by||Carol Lynn Pearson|
Ted Van Horn
W. Grant Williams
|Edited by||Peter G. Czerny|
Cipher in the Snow, written by Jean Mizer, an Idaho teacher, counselor and guidance director, was first published in the NEA Journal, 50:8-10, 1964. It won first prize in the first Reader's Digest/NEA Journal writing competition.
Brigham Young University made a movie of it in 1973. The film was produced by Wetzel Whitaker and Keith Atkinson, with a screenplay by Carol Lynn Pearson. A DVD of the movie is available through BYU's Creative Works Office.
The story is about an ostracized teenager, Cliff Evans, who following his parents' divorce has no friends and becomes a completely withdrawn "cipher". Then on a school bus, he asks to be let off, and collapses and dies in the snow near the roadside. His school's math teacher is asked to notify his parents and write the obituary. Though listed as Cliff's favorite teacher, he recalls that he hardly knew him. After getting a delegation to go to the funeral - it's impossible to find ten people who knew him well enough to go - the teacher resolves never to let this happen to another child in his charge. It is implied that his death was because no one loved him.
- "Cipher in the Snow". Mormon Literature & Creative Arts Database.
- Cipher in the Snow on IMDb
- Cipher in the Snow (1973) at ldsfilm.com
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