The documentary originally premiered at the Sundance film festival this year. The film examines Joe Paterno’s role in the case and the scandal’s effect on State College. Director Amir Bar-Lev believes the documentary provides a “prism of different perspectives…the reason it is an interesting story is because it is a universal story.”
The truth behind that is shocking. The Sandusky tragedy is just one among countless stories. Matt Sandusky represents 42 million people who have gone through similar experiences. The statistics are outrageous.
What is fantastic about this film is that it is raising awareness and keeping child sexual abuse a part of the national discourse – but it is only the beginning. It is essential we stay focused on preventing stories like Happy Valley from ever happening. And the good news is that we DO have the ability to prevent child sexual abuse. As a result of Happy Valley and Matt’s establishment of the Peaceful Hearts Foundation, Matt’s voice has given hope to other survivors and brought the issue to the forefront. Through Darkness to Light’s Stewards of Children program, adults and communities can learn the facts, minimize opportunity, talk about it, recognize the signs and react responsibly. Not only do we have the tools to stop child sexual abuse, we have the moral imperative to do so.
Happy Valley is an unflinching portrayal of something that can happen in any community. We must take the lessons of this heartbreaking incident and use it to make our communities better places for children to grow and thrive.
View the Happy Valley trailer, find out more about the film and read other press on the event.
||Happy Valley Trailer
||Jeff Pearlman Blog