How “The Distraction” Explores Mental Health

Ivan Kander is a bit of a rockstar in the short film world. Having made a name for himself as an amateur posting his videos online, he quickly mastered the craft and made a name for himself. Now, with “The Distraction”, he’s moved into deeply personal territory.

“My entire life I’ve lived with debilitating Anxiety and Depression,” he explains “I found many distractions over the years, but no matter how hard I work or how far I travel it’s always come back heavier and stronger than ever. So, I gathered a few friends who live with, or are directly affected by, Anxiety/Depression/Mental Illness to make a small passion project opening up about what it’s like to live with this rampant, internal horror that is absorbing deeper and deeper into our society.”

By experimenting with genre and cinematography, he manages to capture the debilitating and disorienting world of anxiety and panic. The film is a surreal and sometimes distressing trip inside a panic attack, but it makes for important viewing.

You can see the whole short here (please note, it may be triggering)

The film bills itself as an anxiety/depression experience. It’s a huge undertaking, but it makes for vital viewing.