Coming right off the wings of winning the Best Documentary award at the Golden Door International Film Festival, Director / Actor Garry Pastore is definitely making his mark in the entertainment industry with his latest feature film, Destressed.
When a film brings Golden Door Film Festival founder Bill Sorvino visibly to tears, you know it has to be moving.
“Garry, I’m in tears. I’ve watched this movie before, and I’ve watched it again, and that’s what it’s all about – family,” shared a choked-up Sorvino after the Destressed screening at Panepinto Galleries in Jersey City, NJ.
Destressed took three years to make, as Pastore took his time to capture real-life moments, from victims of Hurricane Sandy, to the secret of longevity of a 103 year old woman in the South West – all emphasizing what’s really important in life – family, love, and appreciating every moment we have. When you put things in perspective, the daily stresses of life, whether it be unreturned phone calls, sitting in traffic jams, or dealing with just one more little thing gone wrong, they don’t surmount to as much when you see what others have to deal with on a much larger scale.
Pastore shared his own experience with how stress was taking a toll on his health prior to making Destressed and he was at a juncture where he made a decision to try to find ways to deal with stressful situations in a way that didn’t destroy him from the inside out. He shows some of that in the movie, where he tries everything from yoga to fishing, and listening to others who make the time to let the crazy world around them fall into the background, so they can find a moment of peace and shift their focus to what’s important – family and love.
“I showed my ass to the world,” said Pastore post-screening. He did – and that’s what makes his film so relatable. When you expose a side of yourself that’s real, where others nod their head with understanding, and you evoke feelings of compassion because many have been in your situation, there’s a magnetic attraction to appreciate what you have placed on display.
“Ironically, I’ve had had more stress making a movie about destressing,” Pastore joked. But, he has a point, sometimes you need to stop and smell the roses, or in this case the nose of the wine, laugh, and embrace the good around you instead of the negative. And there’s a lot of good coming from Pastore’s multiple film awards, including his launch of a Destressed merchandise line this fall, and additional screenings of his film as it makes the rounds in the film festival circuit.
One audience member said he needs a constant reminder of all of the gifts he has, and he can’t wait to get a copy of the film so he can watch it again and again.
“If there’s something negative or poisonous in your life, let it go,” Pastore remarked. He’s right. It’s really good advice and part of the film’s message. These were perhaps the wisest words of the event.