Three years ago, Kim Snyder traveled to Newton, Connecticut to better understand the impact of a mass shooting on a small town. Now, she’s coming to Princeton to inform others about how gun violence can forever change a community.
Snyder’s documentary Newtown will be screened at the Princeton Public Library on Thursday, Jan. 26 at 6:30 p.m. A Q&A with Snyder, who directed the film, will follow the screening.
Filmed over the course of nearly three years, Snyder’s film tells the story of the aftermath of the Dec. 14, 2012 mass shooting of schoolchildren in Newtown, Connecticut. Adam Lanza shot and killed 26 people—20 students and six adults—inside Sandy Hook Elementary School.
The documentary uses the testimonials of teachers, parents, first responders, emergency room staff and others to reveal a traumatized community fractured by grief and driven toward a sense of purpose.
The documentary premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, where Snyder, producer Maria Cuomo Cole and Sandy Hook community members discussed making the film. Nicole Hockley—director at Sandy Hook Promise and mother of Dylan Hockley, who was killed in the Sandy Hook shooting—discussed why parents let Snyder into their lives for the film.
“At the start everybody wanted a piece of you. I became very untrusting of people,” she said. “When Kim approached, I put her through the ringer quite a few times before I allowed my family to be involved. But the thing is I kept allowing her to come back because there was something there that was different. I didn’t feel that there was an agenda. It wasn’t ‘I want you to do this, or cry here, or say these things.’ It was more heartfelt and genuine and sincere.”
Newtown received critical acclaim after its release, holding a 93 percent critic rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The free program will take place in the library’s Community Room, located at 65 Witherspoon St., Princeton. For more information about the event, call (609) 924-9529 or visit the library’s website.